Wednesday, 16 October 2013
Do your children get enough daily exercise?
According to NHS guidelines, the sixty minutes should comprise of both moderate-intensity activities and vigorous-intensity activities, so things that make your child break a sweat and also that raise their heart rate. (For children under-5, the guidelines are outlined here). There's a useful page listing examples of activities that fall into the two groups. Having a read through, I confess my son probably does not do enough vigorous-intensity activities, definitely not in the winter when our time outside is restricted by bad weather.
The sixty minutes are completely manageable. The moderate-intensity exercise is taken care of with our walks or scooter rides to and from school and my son's time playing outside in the playground, doing PE etc. The vigorous-intensity exercise takes a bit more thought and planning however. If your child does a sport or dance class, that would take care of it. However, on the days they don't, it means trying to incorporate something out and about or at home.
I realise, as a parent, I am much more focused on the healthy eating side to bringing up children with a healthy lifestyle. We walk everywhere (we don't own a car), we like to spend time playing outside in the garden or at parks / in the woods but I admit I probably don't make enough effort to encourage daily vigorous-intensity activities. Something for me to work on!
Do you think your child gets the recommended amount and types of exercise each day? Do you rely on after-school sports and such like for vigorous-intensity exercise?