Walking is a great way for adults to stay in good health. This is true for children too! Encouraging children to walk as soon as they can will help them to develop properly while introducing them to the joys of regular physical activity.
The importance of encouraging your child to exercise
Children's lifestyles have radically changed over the last few years. Today, young people spend more time in front of a screen (television, video games or tablets) than doing a regular physical activity. They have even stopped walking as much as they used to, and go by public transport or in the car instead.
When it comes to children's bodies, this reduced physical activity leads to a gradual increase in body fat at the expense of muscle mass. Little by little, children will start to tire more quickly and lose their enthusiasm for sport.
When a sedentary lifestyle sets in, the risk of obesity increases and can lead to joint problems and even respiratory complications.
A healthy and dynamic lifestyle starting in childhood is still the best way to avoid these issues. As parents, there's one simple rule to remember: "Keep moving every day!"
This can be achieved by playing a game, playing sports or simply by walking!
The benefits of walking for your child's health
30 minutes of walking a day will have multiple benefits for your child.
- Children who walk to school will be calmer and more concentrated than their classmates who come to school by car. Walking home from school also gives children a chance to let off steam after a day spent sitting down!
- On the way, ask your child to choose the route you take. This will develop their independence. They may decide to take a short cut, or to extend the walk or even to stop in a park to eat their after-school snack. Taking on responsibilities will help them to grow and develop awareness about their surroundings.
- Walking puts you in a good mood and walking outdoors is ideal for clearing the head and enjoying the natural light. Done regularly and consciously, walking also contributes to developing a more positive body image.
- Walking tones the entire body when it is practiced over time and it develops cardiac and respiratory capacity. It helps your child's keep a healthy weight and strengthens the muscles in their legs, feet and arms if you choose to walk more quickly!
Walking with your child: a real bonding moment
By going on frequent walks with your little athlete, you create some space to spend time together during your day. A welcome sanctuary for eliminating stress and being more available for your friends and family. During this quality time spent with your child, you can take the time to listen to them within the context of a warmer relationship.