Children seem to be born with bags of energy and there’s never a better time to teach them the importance of exercise than when they’re still young. By incorporating a kids running routine in their list of daily activities, you can ensure they attain a life-long habit. Which is quite amazing, considering that running has countless benefits and is known to improve both physical and mental health. Therefore, we’ve put together some tips to help your children start running safely and with strong sprinting technique.
Running safely starts with the correct form. This includes holding your torso straight, bending your elbows at 90-degrees and holding your head still. Other elements include lifting your knee to your waist and keeping your back leg straight for maximum power. Kids should keep their strides short and quick, and only lengthen them once they gain momentum.
Start slowly by standing opposite your child and practising on-the-spot running before moving into a slow jog. Have some fun by setting goals, pumping out some tunes or involving their friends in your lesson. It’s also really important to invest in the right kids running shoes, to ensure your child’s feet and joints are protected.
Explore ways for your child to enjoy running without worrying about where they are. This includes after school clubs and local running groups for kids. If you’re a parent to older children, why not help them plan a local running route? Ensure they stick to busier areas and avoid running at night. A high-visibility jacket is a worthy investment and it’s also wise for your child to carry a mobile phone.
The World Health Organisation recommends that children under the age of five shouldn’t stay inactive for long, as exercise helps in strengthening their bones and muscles. Children between the age of six and seventeen should exercise for at least an hour a day. Moreover, this exercise needn’t be done in one go but instead, it can be accumulated in bouts of shorter exercises or sprints throughout the day.
Finally, it’s really important to offer lots of encouragement and not to pressurise your child if they’ve had enough. While lots of running is brilliant for their health, it is possible to burnout so urge them to listen to their body and stop when they’ve run out of steam. Excessive exercise or the wrong form can also lead to injury so teach your children how to enjoy vigorous activities with care. Your child’s health, after all, is your first priority. That’s why it’s also important to make sure they and the whole family have a good health insurance plan in case of injury or illness.