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According to statistics, six out of every 10 children between the ages of 5 and 14 years participate in sport outside of school. Health Surveys conducted has found that 25% of children and teenagers aged 5 to 17 years are overweight or obese, which indicates that we need to foster a more sports-minded culture and encourage children to be physically active.

Children who are active dramatically reduce the risk of many diseases, which include osteoporosis and heart disease.  Regular exercises reduces the risk of emotional problems such as depression and anxiety.  By establishing early healthy habits in life children are more likely to mature into physically active adults.

Some of the Benefits of Sports for Children

  • Increase cardiovascular fitness.
  • Healthy growth of muscles, tendons, ligaments and bones.
  • Reduce risk of obesity.
  • The ability to physically relax and avoid the complications of chronic muscular tension, such as back ache and headache.
  • Improve balance and coordination.
  • Confidence and mental health.
  • Improve sleep.
  • Improve social skills.
  • Personal skills including leadership and cooperation.

By reducing inactivity may be effective in achieving overall increases in energy levels in young children.  Taking the steps to reduce children’s sedentary time is important.

Sedentary Pursuits & Children

Sedentary activities that compete with physical activity include:

  • Computer games.
  • Homework.
  • Television.
  • Internet use.

Teenagers and children should participate in at least 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous-intensity physical activity each day.

They should not spend more than 2 hours a day using electronic media for entertainment, such as internet, TV and computer games, particularly during daylight hours.  These recommendations is a guide to the minimum level of physical activity required for good health.

Encourage your Child to be Physically Active

As a parent you can help your children to be physically active in many ways:

  • Lead by example and be physically active.
  • Encourage your child to ride their bicycle or walk for short trips rather than relying on you to drive them
  • Arrange family outings with physical activities such as playing sport together.
  • Enrol your children at First Touch for weekend football training.
  • Support your children’s efforts in sport and if they have a match stand on the side-lines cheering them.
  • Consult with your children’s school on ways to encourage greater participation in sports and physical activities.
  • Set time limited on sedentary activities.

A HEALTHY, ACTIVE CHILD IS A HAPPY BALANCED CHILD

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