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Child obesity is a growing problem in the UK, and with shocking statistics revealing that 25 percent of boys and 33 percent of girls aged between two and 19 years are overweight or obese – the problem doesn’t look like it is going to disappear anytime soon.

Parents are often surprised when they are told that their children are overweight. Health experts believe that child obesity has become the norm, therefore they are unable to tell if their child is overweight or not. And with 1 in 3 primary school children classed as overweight, it is not surprising that they find it hard to notice the problem.
Experts insist more exercise needs to be integrated into childrens’ daily lives as well as a healthy balanced diet. Child obesity levels could significantly decrease if their lifestyle changed. So why not start now? As parents/guardians, it is your responsibility to give your child the best start in life and as spring is just on the horizon, it is the perfect time to get your children active and enjoying the outdoors.

Below are some exercise ideas that are fun and great for fitness:

Swimming

Swimming has been tipped as one of the best exercises. The sport benefits the whole body and develops general strength and endurance. Especially on a hot summers day, swimming encourages children to be active and improve their social integration. This cardiovascular exercise promotes heart and lung health and improves stamina and flexibility.

Research has shown that that early swimmers perform better on tests measuring social, academic, motor and personality developments.
The activity can have a positive effect on emotional health and can improve your child’s mood.
Swimming can be enjoyed by all the family; therefore encouraging family time that involves exercise will benefit the whole family physically and emotionally.

Trampolining

Trampolines are enjoyed by anyone, any age! Believe it or not, bouncing on a trampoline has the same amount of health benefits as doing a few laps in the pool. Similar to swimming, trampolining is a cardiovascular exercise working the core muscles, helping your child keep trim and toned. Jumping repeatedly on a trampoline can be a strenuous exercise, however because your child is jumping on a bouncy trampoline pad, it reduces the impact, protecting your child’s joints and bones.
Research has shown that trampolining has positive effects for children who suffer with autism. As a child bounces, it can help integrate a child’s sensory and physical systems. Trampolining involves a lot of concentration and awareness, often without your child even realising. The activity develops coordination skills and improves balance and rhythm, essential skills for children to learn in early life.

Trampolining is such a convenient sport. Retailers sell trampolines in a huge range of sizes and shapes to suit any garden size.
Note that children who are less than 6 years old should use junior trampolines with handles.

Hula Hooping

A real favourite amongst children, hula hooping is the perfect tool to encourage gentle exercise into your child’s routine. People are often shocked at how many wellbeing and health benefits are achieved from hula hooping. Below is a list of what hula hooping can do for your child:

  • Improve coordination skills
  • Improve flexibility of the spine
  • Enhance your child’s mood
  • Increase your child’s fitness levels
  • Help burn fat

Balance Bikes
Balance bikes are ideal for toddlers as young as three. A balance bike does not have pedals or stabilisers, so children learn to balance and steer very quickly. Soon they’ll be balancing, learning and playing all at once. All the time, they are developing their motor skills and coordination, while having terrific fun.
Balance bikes improve:

  • Balance and coordination skills
  • Communication skills
  • Growth and security
  • Independence
  • Confidence
  • Fitness and stamina

Find the perfect sized trampoline and the best looking balance bike and start encouraging your child to get fit this summer.