When we think of exercise, we think of going to the gym, running or lifting weights. To adults, exercise means shedding off some pounds or getting a toned body. But for kids, exercise means playing and being physically active.
Like adults, kids need exercise.
Running and playing around are considered exercise for children, and it they have great health benefits. Kids exercise during gym class at school, during recess, at dance class or soccer practice, while riding bikes, or when playing tag.
According to WHO, children and teenagers aged 5–17 should accumulate at least 60 minutes of moderate- to vigorous-intensity physical activity daily, and amounts of physical activity greater than 60 minutes provide additional health benefits.
Kids develop endurance when they regularly go out and engage in physical activity. The heart beats faster and the child breathes harder. When done regularly and for extended periods of time, physical activity will strengthen the heart and enhance the body's ability to deliver oxygen to all its cells.
Studies have proven that kids who are physically fit sleep better and are better able to handle physical and emotional challenges as they grow up.
Active children have the ability to concentrate much better, even at the end of a long school day. They also have lessened risks of anxiety and depression, plus, it improves mood and attitude in children.
With those being said, parents should limit TV, video game and computer time. It's a bit sad to see that kids don't play outside anymore, when they should be making the most of their childhood spending time outdoors. Exercise with your child to improve your own health while modeling for your child to develop good exercise habits. The benefits of exercising while young can comprise a lifetime commitment to fitness.
If you are a parent, enourage and let your children choose sports or activities they enjoy and will stick to as they grow.