Can you name which of the following statements is false?
● Children need to play some type of sport to stay physically healthy
● It is important children exercise hard enough
● Strength training might stunt children’s growth
Well, turns out all of them are!
We all know to get our children to stay active and off the couch has numerous benefits to their health and wellbeing. However, as with adults’ fitness, there are some myths & misconceptions that are just calling out to be debunked.
Myth #1: Children need to chill and rest during the weekend after a busy week at school: Of course, every child deserves some rest to clear his/her mind and do an activity they enjoy at home, but we shouldn’t underestimate how full of energy they are and how active they can be. Letting them play videogames for an hour or two is not a big deal, but they shouldn’t stay indoors for very long.
Myth #2: Going back to our number three statement, strength training will not stunt a child’s growth. That’s just fantasy. When done under a professional’s supervision, lifting weights is a safe and fun activity for children.
Myth #3: My kid just won’t eat healthy foods, so it’s best to stop trying as that won’t change: This is understandable as a lot of people grow up eating little and sometimes barely any foods like fruits and vegetables, so we take it as a habit that once ingrained in a child becomes unfeasible to change. Let us remember something important here: small steps!
Myth #4: Children need to play some type of sport to stay physically healthy: Of course, it is a good idea to encourage your kid to participate in a sport and develop their social skills and make friends, but it should not be mandatory. The most important thing is that your kid gets enough exercise every day, whether that is playing, walking, running or just moving about. 45min to an hour a day is enough.
Myth #5: It is important that your kid exercises hard enough to benefit from exercising: Children don’t need to sweat or run out of breath to reap the rewards of moving around. Getting the recommended amount of activity per day suffices.