In order to motivate your children,

  • Make sure you offer age appropriate activities. Children may seem bored or frustrated if they are not doing the appropriate activity or for an appropriate length of time.
  • Provide your children with the opportunity to be active by taking them to playgrounds or parks where they can get some exercise.
  • Allow your children to be active with their friends. Children will enjoy combining activity and social time. Ask your children if they would like to be enrolled in an organized physical activity with their friends.
  • Stress the idea that activity is not about competition, but that it is about being healthy and having fun!
  • Give your children praise for being active. When children receive praise for an action, they are likely to want to repeat it. If your children develop good feelings about being active, they are likely to want to try other activities as well!

It is also important to understand your children’s fitness personalities. Some children lack athletic ability or the interest in being active. These children will require more help and support from either a parent or older role model to become active. Others have athletic ability, but do not prefer a competitive environment. These children enjoy casually playing sports, such as shooting baskets or playing catch. Finally, some children have athletic ability and are committed to a sport or activity. These children are likely to want to be on a competitive team.

No matter what kind of attitude your children have towards being active, your positive attitude and modeling of physical activity can have quite an influence on their willingness to be more active this year!