Why Getting Your Kids Moving is More Important Than Ever

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Fall is a refreshing and fun time of year for families, but it is also the time to be more cognizant of our children’s and our own wellbeing.  With the upcoming cold and flu season, as well as everything else that 2020 has surprised us with, helping your children take care of their health–both mental and physical–is even more important now than ever.  One of the best ways to do that is through regular exercise, which can be fun for both you and your kids.

Special thanks are extended to the YMCA of Greenville for sponsoring this article.

It’s important to continue caring for our immune systems in all the ways we know: practicing good hygiene such as frequent hand washing, eating nutrient-rich food, and getting plenty of sleep. But what some might not realize is that regular physical activity is a key driver in building a healthy immune system, too.

Regular physical activity has a proven correlation with helping to strengthen you and your children’s immune systems and can help fend off illnesses. It also is proven to reduce stress, which can help improve mental health and quality of sleep, which children desperately need while they are growing and learning.  With as much time that kids are spending sitting in front of devices all day long, it is so important for them to take a much needed break to move around away from screens. 

Samantha Sanders, a mother of two children and the YMCA of Greenville’s Senior Membership and Wellness Director at the Prisma Health Family YMCA branch, shares some fun and creative ways kids can get active every day – whether at your Y branch or at home. In this video, Samantha recommends several examples of what kids can do to stay physically active and build lifelong healthy habits.

At the Y:

  • Participating in programs like:
    • Youth sports like basketball
    • Swim lessons
    • Wellness assessments with orientation on how to use cardio and weight equipment (10+)
  • Participating in classes like:
    • Virtual cycling classes (10+)
    • PASS – speed and agility training (10+)

At home:

  • Playing a game of hopscotch or badminton
  • Going for a walk or hike together as a family
  • Participating in the Y’s virtual group exercise classes on YouTube
  • Competing to see who can do the most squats, sit ups or lunges during a commercial break while watching your family’s favorite TV show

No matter how your kids like to move, the key is to get them moving, and get them into the habit. It could help reduce their risk of illness and stress. Plus, they might have a little fun doing it, too. 

For more information about the YMCA’s programs and classes for kids, visit www.ymcagreenville.org.

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