For many young families, life can be overwhelming. There are work, family and school obligations to juggle. Amid the birthday parties, sports and other activities to shuttle children to, the housework and errands, and the nap schedules, is it any wonder that our days are so busy? Even for those of us who try to operate at a slower pace, being told that it’s important to focus on helping kids develop physical literacy at a young age can seem like just another thing on an already overwhelming list.
That’s where a good life hack can come in handy. They are little tweaks to your activities and daily routines that can help your children develop physical literacy without adding anything to the family schedule, because they are based on things that most of us are doing anyway.
1. Make a tightrope
2. Make your next picnic in the park blanket-free
3. Use clean-up time as a way to practise throwing
4. Turn leisurely walks into a time to practise jumping
5. Make a splash at bath time
6. Capitalize on your child’s desire to help out
7. Give them their own household chores
8. Resist the urge to hoist them up stairs
9. Move typically indoor activities outside
Have older kids do homework or reading assignments outside while the little ones play. Outdoor play is one of the most important ways for kids to develop movement skills and any way you can make it happen more often is great.
What may seem like small changes to your day now can lay the groundwork for a lifetime of physical activity. Employ one or two of these hacks and you’ll be helping your children develop skills that will give them the foundation, confidence and motivation to try new things and have fun being active.
Sara Smeaton is a senior contributing editor and social media strategist for Active for Life, a not-for-profit initiative committed to helping parents raise healthy, happy kids who are physically literate. Find Active for Life on Facebook and Twitter.