Everyone knows by now that physical exercise and a balanced diet are key to living a healthier life. One of the great things about exercise is that it doesn’t have to be done alone and who could be more convenient than family as a workout buddy. Getting your whole family involved in physical activity is an excellent opportunity to create an extra social bond between family members. It also provides another form of motivation, and if planned well this can become a weekly event the entire family looks forward.
According to results found from a study by the Australian Bureau of Statistics National Health Survey:2007-2008 overweight and obesity in both children and adults is a major health concern. This study revealed that once children become obese they are more likely to remain obese into their adult years and have a greater risk of developing both short and long-term health conditions, such as Type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Children who are classified as obese also have a higher risk of social and psychological problems, such as discrimination and bullying, and if obesity does continue into adulthood it will affect your child’s long-term health.
However this doesn’t just mean that your children must increase their activity level, parents have to get involved too and should lead by example and become role models for their children. Organising time for your family to take part in any form of regular exercise should be a high priority for any responsible parent and having a plan in place is the only way to make sure it is achieved.
Here are some ideas to get your family moving:
- Do things together – find some activities to do with the whole family e.g. plan a day trip to a local park or beach, jump on a bike or try one of Melbourne’s ovals or running tracks. Even a simple game of throwing a ball is great way of challenging your child’s balance and coordination.
- Friendly competition – Whether it’s to see who can skip-rope the longest or run the fastest, friendly family competition can be the perfect incentive to entice your family off the couch and breaking a sweat. Even if your family isn’t that competitive getting them motivated to help a good cause can be an alternative means of increasing exercise. There are numerous fun runs and other charity events across Melbourne throughout the entire year that raise money for many worthy charities.
- Team sports or other activities – find out your kids interests and get them involved in your local sporting clubs or dance classes. There are plenty of different sports and exercise opportunities out there for all skill levels and what better way to make new friends and get the family out of the house and away from the television.
- Leave the car at home – instead of driving the kids to school or driving yourself to work or down the local shops, why not walk or ride a bike.
- Limit time watching TV and playing video games – Television and computers are a big part of people’s lives today but why not try using some of that time engaging in some physical activity. For most of us whether at school or work we spend a large part of our day sitting at a desk and so we must make an extra effort to get moving in our spare time.
- Be a role model – If your kids see you performing and enjoying regular exercise then they will be more inclined to follow in your footsteps and practice your good habits ensuring a longer and healthier future.
- Praise your kids – Every kid is not the same and will have different interests in a whole range of sporting activities. Whether it is competitive team sports, riding bikes or running make sure you support them and give them praise for doing what they are doing.
- Promote a good diet – Keep healthy snacks available around the house and avoid buying ‘junk’ food. If children are not given the option of unhealthy foods then their diet will remain balanced and nutritious. Children can only rely on what their parents supply for adequate nourishment therefore if you only stock high fat/sugar based foods with limited fruit and vegetable options your children will lack the energy needed to get through the day.
- Healthy sleeping habits – If you fail to give your body the rest it needs you will find it difficult to perform at your peak during exercise. Remember tired family members are going to be poor workout partners. It is important to enforce a reasonable bedtime for your children so that they receive at least 8 hours of sleep per night to ensure they remain active throughout the day.
Ahead of all the things mentioned above, make sure exercise is FUN. Keep it playful and positive; exercise doesn’t have to be hard and boring. Your family should aim for at least 30 minutes of physical activity per day to be guaranteed to see and feel the benefits of a healthier body.
Need extra motivation for your family? Why not hire a Melbourne personal trainer. Our MaxNRG Personal Training team are qualified to train all ages and can set up your entire family with individualised training programs that are fun and effective.
Get you family started with the MaxNRG Personal Trainer team today for great fitness and weight loss results! Our mobile personal training services that operates throughout Melbourne is the best way for you family to start achieving your health and fitness goals. Call 0403-741-278 or simply fill out our online form here and we’ll do the rest.