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To ask how much exercise your young children get and how you make sure they get enough?

(26 Posts)
tinypop4 Mon 13-Mar-17 13:44:33

I am aware that children should get an hour of activity a day that raises the heart rate and I'm not sure I'm getting that for dd who is 4 (still pre-school)
What we do:
We walk to pre-school and back 3 days per week which is just over half a mile each way- up a hill coming back. (Unless weather is icy)
Try and get to the playground twice a week on her non pre-school days or at the weekend as she's tired from pre-school
Swimming lesson every weekend- she's a good swimmer so she's getting some proper exercise here for 45 minutes.

No other organised classes, she still gets quite tired so I don't want to overdo it. she likes a potter but doesn't really run around in the garden.
This probably isn't enough- how can I increase without signing her up to gym and dance classes yet?

nonameinspiration Mon 13-Mar-17 13:48:33

Dds 4 and 7. They have a 30 minute swimming lesson a week, 45/60 minutes gymnastics and whatever they do in pe at school plus at least one way walking to school a day which is about 15 minutes. A hour dog walk most weekends. They were both doing an hour of dance a week but dropped it in favour of less frequent horse riding. It's not adding up to 7 hours a week at the moment!! Now they weather is improving we go out at the weekend with the dog more though

bigkidsdidit Mon 13-Mar-17 13:56:02

I find it really hard. My 6 yo:

Scoot too and from school (15 mins each way)
3x play time where he plays tig etc
Swimming 2x week for an hour
Park after school 3x week for at least half an hour

So the same as you really. He used to do football but didn't enjoy it.

I would say if you could get a friend or two to the park with you, that's been my best way - three of them together play tig and racing, whereas just with me they want to play sand castles or something more sedate!

bigkidsdidit Mon 13-Mar-17 13:57:05

(My 3yo does much more because his nursery take them for football, swimming and dance classes during the day. Not much help for you though)

tinypop4 Mon 13-Mar-17 13:59:12

Bigkids sounds like a great nursery I've never seen one that does all that! Lucky boy!
I find it hard because she still gets tired quite easily so I'm mindful of overdoing things activities wise yet otherwise she can't eat dinner and is a bit emotional!! She's a 6.30 bed kind of girl...

IamFriedSpam Mon 13-Mar-17 14:00:42

I struggle too. My eldest is naturally energetic and always on the go - I have more trouble getting her to sit still. My youngest is much more sedentary - we walk 3/4 of a mile to school and back and does sport at school twice a week and plays outside but he just doesn't want to move around if he can help it.

FourKidsNotCrazyYet Mon 13-Mar-17 14:05:04

This is going to sound the ultimate in lazy parenting but I have my running machine set up in the playroom and the younger two boys love playing on it! They run, slide and then fall off the end, roll cars on it backwards and forwards. Probably spend upwards of two hours on that alone. Plus they play a lot of football together. Outside if it's dry and down the hallway if its raining. Plus we walk to school (0.9 miles) and nursery, walk into town most days and go to the park.

tinypop4 Mon 13-Mar-17 14:06:46

Four kids not lazy- a stroke of parenting genius! Sounds like they get loads of exercise playing on it!!

FourKidsNotCrazyYet Mon 13-Mar-17 14:27:17

I've tried getting our Husky on it too. Apparently he only likes 'proper' walks grin

tinypop4 Mon 13-Mar-17 14:30:25

Laughing out loud at the thought of 2 little boys and a husky on your treadmill in the playroom grin

FourToTheFloor Mon 13-Mar-17 14:30:43

Dd1 6yo walks to and from school 15/20 mins each way and has started running with her DF on the weekend. She's as thin as a whippet and I worry she's doing too much. It's about burning off the calaries you don't need not necessarily specifically raising heart rate.

FourToTheFloor Mon 13-Mar-17 14:31:25

Calories. I can spell.

Rosti1981 Mon 13-Mar-17 14:38:04

It's a lot easier in spring and summer time. Then you can just let them loose in the local park.... In winter it is all much harder.

DD (6) scoots, cycles or walks to and from school probably about 3 x week. It used to be everyday but since I started working, it has become harder to juggle and if we have a disastrous morning we do end up driving sometimes. She does 2 dance classes a week at school, swims once, a martial arts class and PE twice a week. Her school also do "a mile a day" which is basically a programme where everyone runs for 15 mins, no special equipment. I'm not that worried about her.

DS is 3 and his main activity is running to get his sister from school (as we often run late, it is literally running!). He does forest school the 3 days I work so that's also fairly active. Park when we squeeze it in. I worry a bit more about his activity levels as he does quite a bit less than his sister when he is with me. Not worried about the forest school days as I think they are outside running around pretty much the whole time.

The main thing I think helps is building in short bursts of activity here and there, garden time, quick run round the block, school run by foot/scooter/bike, rather than big things / classes. Also trying not to rely on the car too much. It is harder in the cold/wet/dark in winter though and I know things have slipped with us recently....

Rosti1981 Mon 13-Mar-17 14:40:38

I disagree about the calories point too. Obviously it isn't good to be taking in excess calories, but provided they mostly have a healthy diet and self regulate their appetite then there shouldn't be loads extra to burn off. I see exercise more as a way of getting fresh air, moving body, enjoying being active, raising heart rate. I definitely wouldn't want to make a big thing about calorie burning, especially with children.

Natsku Mon 13-Mar-17 14:42:40

Young children (under 8) should be getting 2-3 hours daily actually and I really wonder how that can be achieved every day.

My 6 year old plays outside for at least 3 hours a day on weekdays but she's not running around the whole time, probably closer to an hour a day actual exercise.

tinypop4 Mon 13-Mar-17 15:32:15

2-3 hours, gosh I'm way off mark? Is that 2 hours of light activity (moving around) plus some heart-rate type activity or 2-3 hours of running around? Very hard in poor weather

AYankinSpanx Mon 13-Mar-17 15:40:07

We live just by miles of open countryside, so the DC race around for at least a couple of hours three or four times a week, climbing, jumping, running etc.

They play tennis, swim, do a gymnastics class and walk a lot to get to various places, so I'm happy with that lot for now.

missyB1 Mon 13-Mar-17 15:45:13

My ds is 8, his school do sports every day of the week for an hour, plus forest school on Thursday. on Saturdays he has a swimming lesson followed by two hours of football training. At home he's usually kicking a ball in the garden or out on his bike. He's as fit as a fiddle, wish I had his energy!

witsender Mon 13-Mar-17 15:52:04

Mine aren't at school so are more or less constantly on the move. We are out and about most days, swimming, dance and horse riding weekly. Plus garden, play park, beach etc.

Natsku Mon 13-Mar-17 15:52:19

2-3 hours of running about etc. yle.fi/uutiset/osasto/news/education_minister_three_hours_a_day_exercise_for_kids_under_8/9150268

I agree that its hard in poor weather unless there's access to inside spaces to run around. DD is outside daily every day no matter the weather but when its shitty weather she isn't going to be out long enough.

tinypop4 Mon 13-Mar-17 15:54:00

Today for example we went to a garden centre that has a little soft play and dc dashed around for about 30-40 mins before they got fed up. This afternoon we walked to a park 10 mins away, they played for 30 mins, we walked back again. To be fair she has a stinking cold so giving up a little earlier than she might usually but even so we're not close to 2-3 hours

Natsku Mon 13-Mar-17 16:07:18

Add up all the short spurts she runs around inside at home though as well (for instance DD has been dancing to Aqua in the lounge for the past 40 minutes). I think the recommendation about limiting time spent sat down is probably more important than getting 2-3 hours every day.

Mumoftwoyoungkids Mon 13-Mar-17 16:08:07

Oh God - this thread is fabulous just for the mental image of two kids and a dog on a treadmill!

Ok - my two - Dd is 6. Cycles to and from school 4 days a week. (1.5 miles each way - maybe 15 mins or so.) 1 hour swimming. 1 hour dancing. 1 hour trampolining. 1 hour gymnastics. Apparently spends all her break and lunchtimes doing handstands and cartwheels / playing tig. (Don't know this for sure but that is exactly what she does the second she's picked up from school each day.) 1 or two family bike rides a week. Playing football in the garden with ds and Dh most weeks.

Ds (age 3). 1 hour tennis, 1 hour swimming, 1 hour gymnastics. 3 hours soft play every other week or so. Lots of playing outside at nursery. Weekly bike ride with Dh. Weekly bike ride with me. 1 or 2 family bike rides.

(We're a "cycling" family in case you haven't noticed!)

StrawbRhi Mon 13-Mar-17 16:16:09

DD is 6 and she walks half a mile to school and back most days. Her school has also been doing the 'daily mile' challenge for the last year where children run or walk a mile every day in laps around the playground so that adds up! In addition:
Tues is a 30 min swimming class,
Weds is dance at school
Thursday is a 60 min gymnastic class
Friday is PE at school
And at the weekends we try to go for a 5 mile walk on one of the days. That's getting harder as I'm 28 weeks pregnant with SPD but will resume regularly when the baby is here.

Looking at all that it's no wonder she's tired at the weekends and whippet thin! All unintentional, just the way it is.

BenLinusatemyhomework Mon 13-Mar-17 16:20:18

I struggle too and have taken to putting a kiddies Hiit workout on 3 or 4 times a week on YouTube and getting them to do that, alongside their usual activities.

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