As most parents know, there is no be-all, end-all way of making kids physically active. Just getting them to turn off the TV and go outside after school often can take a great deal of encouragement. The Saskatchewan in Motion movement is well aware of these challenges.
As the video below shows, support and incentives can go a long way in getting kids active. With encouragement from their parents and the re:activity program, the Bansley children have reduced their screen time and increased the number of steps they take per day. However, they still fall short of the goals they set with the program. Most notable are the facts they rely on their parents to get physical activity and don’t go outside to play on their own terms.
The key ideas that come out in the video are helpful suggestions for all parents and children:
- set screen time limits
- parents can set activity targets for kids: walking to school, for example
- parents can challenge kids: to learn a new skill each week, for example, and to document the independent practice on that new skill with photos or video
- parents can provide appropriate rewards for the skill development: a day at an adventure park with zip lines, for example
- parents can establish games that can be played while walking to school: walking bingo, for example
Saskatchewan in Motion’s re:activity campaign is a “mutli-media memo to parents regarding physical activity” and it is worth checking out.