Children and exercise

Children and exercise

As we all know, there’s never a busier time of growth for the body than childhood, with the foundations for future wellness, strength and resilience being laid all the time. 

Along with the addition of Chewwies vitamins, doing the right amount of physical exercise is essential, helping the body to grow as well as ensuring that children are getting the right amount of essential building blocks such as vitamin D, great for bone strength and positive mood.

Think that babies can’t move around? Current NHS guidelines encourage exercise from day one, with any movement helping strong muscles to grow. Reaching out for toys, crawling and even turning the head are all supervised ways of getting your baby active, as well as encouraging a warm and loving bond with fun interaction.

We all know that toddlers are known for being active but having some structure to activity will ensure that every part of the body is being included in physical exercise. Current NHS guidelines state that a toddler should be active for at least 3 hours each and every day, with a mixture of indoor and outdoor play and a range of activities to keep things fun so that even at this early stage, a child is associating physical activity with a feelgood feeling. Think safely running around in open spaces, using play equipment as well as just playtime being part of the everyday routine.

For the under-5’s, it’s all about activity as this is the time when habits such as watching TV and playing on games consoles can start to become habit-forming. It may seem tempting when you’re in a rush to place them in a pushchair so that they’re not lagging behind but see this time as memory making and enjoy every active moment together.

For the next childhood years that can be defined as the school years from 5 to 18, the focus shifts to more dedicated physical activity, with the government ensuring that physical education remains on every school’s core curriculum. At the time when there is a lot of sitting at desks and the lure of social media and video games, there should be a minimum of 60 minutes of moderate activity. Just walking to school is a bonus, with anything that increases the heart rate better still. A mix of both aerobic and strengthening exercises are beneficial to the body as a whole, with enjoyment of exercise essential to forming good habits into adulthood.