The number of obese children in Georgia is still on the rise. The rest of America isn’t doing much better. Once school is out, parents tend to allow kids to stay up later and sleep longer in the mornings. Many households look forward to easing the tight schedules that have to be kept while school is in session, but morning exercise is best for burning calories throughout the day.
Children don’t have to do push-ups or deep knee-bends to get the exercise they need to get or stay fit, but they do need to be active. Whether the kids go to the home of a relative, baby-sitter or stay at home during the school vacation, they will enjoy at least a couple of these ideas:
- Get a video to teach the kids yoga. They will benefit from the poses by gaining balance and strengthening the core. Make it a competition between siblings with a simple reward for the winner and runner-up rewards for trying. There need be nothing mystic about yoga, children can meditate or use the time to pray.
- Jumping rope kept kids fit years ago. Bring it back. Jumping rope as a single and/or using two people to swing the rope for the third is great fun and exercise for the jumpers and the swingers.
- The hula-hoop is also making a come-back. These old-fashioned ways of having fun were the tools that kept children slim for decades. Besides being active, jumping rope and hula-hooping teach children co-ordination.
- Swimming is such fun and burns many calories. Public swimming pools may be contaminated with E.coli, but North Georgia is rich with lakes, rivers and creeks. In many state parks, there is also kayaking, canoeing and paddle boats to keep kids active while having fun.
- An empty church parking lot is a great place for kids to learn how to roller skate. Always ask permission first. Churches have liability insurance that may prohibit children playing anywhere on the property. Never roller skate on city sidewalks.
- Riding bicycles is a great activity for the entire family. In fact, the entire family can do all of these activities together to stay fit and create forever memories.
- Berry-picking at one of North Georgia’s many orchards is a great family activity with mouth-watering rewards that provide antioxidants and an appreciation for the berries.
These are just a few simple things for kids to do that don’t cost a lot of money. The more active children remain, the better they will sleep at night and be less likely to over-do the junk food. Keeping the mind and body sharp during the summer vacation will lessen the pain of returning to school this August.