It is very important that children maintain physical activity and here are some of the ways in which you can encourage this within your family.
Encouragement and motivation
Exercise shouldn't always be about getting your child to go swimming or running, so think about which activities your child enjoys more - are there any day-to-day activities that you could turn into a fun form of exercise (that gets your heart rate up for 10 minutes or more at a time) for everyone to enjoy together? Here are some suggestions for 10 minute exercise routines:
10 Minute Shake Up Games: Change4Life and Disney have teamed up to bring you play-along games inspired by your favourite Disney and Pixar characters. These 10-minute bursts of fun will really get your kids moving and count towards the 60 active minutes they need every day. More resources can be found on the Your School Games - Active Recovery site
Whilst you might be focused on getting your child to school as quickly as possible via car for example, the walk there and back is a simple form of exercise which can help your child (and you!) reach your 60 minutes of activity a day.
It's important to let them try different things so they can find something they like. Try and understand which forms of exercise they enjoy and encourage them to continue with these and look for further opportunities to develop their interest like joining a local team or an afterschool club. All forms of exercise and sport are great for a child and you should motivate and celebrate any progress or developments they make.
Doing sport is not only healthy for the body, it can have a great impact on confidence and well-being; above all it can be a lot of fun! It is important to support your child in trying out different sports and be encouraging whenever they start playing. Try and promote the feel-good factor as much as possible.
Physical Education (PE)
Children need to be active for at least 60 minutes in total each day but also need to reduce the time they spend sitting. PE sessions will offer different sport types so listen to what your child has done each session and what they have particularly enjoyed. You can see if they would like to continue some of their favourite sports outside of school or you can find out if your school offers afterschool activities.
Using the community (Sports and facilities)
Within your community there are organisations which offer a wide range of sports bundled into one package/membership. There are different levels to these memberships and they strive to be inclusive by having reductions for certain groups.
Using the community (parks and green spaces)
Try and engage with other families in your neighbourhood and find out what activities they do. This could be a useful way to gain ideas whilst giving your children opportunities to make friends and partake in shared activities. Checkout your local authority websites to find more about parks and free activities that are available in your area.