Our children’s lives, more than any generation of children before them, are seriously lacking. Not lacking in gadgets, technology, education or food (for the most part). But lacking in exercise. Exercise – something that is free, needs little to no equipment and can be done nearly anywhere and our kids lack it. How has this come to pass? Why aren’t the playgrounds filled with kids playing grounder, tag or hide-and-seek? Why aren’t kids riding their bikes more? Playing pick up games of road hockey or basketball?
I know the answer differs for most of us, though I suspect it’s a blend of many variables from video games/iPods/computers etc to over scheduled kids and everything in between, including a fear of letting our children play outside without us, and having parents who both work outside the home who may not be able to go out and play with the kids. But whatever the reasons that hold true for you, the fact remains: kids are not playing as much as they used to. In fact, [Tweet “9/10 Canadian kids do not get enough physical activity to be healthy. @CanadianTire knows kids #WannaPlay”]
Canadian Tire cares deeply about our kids and their activity level and we are all rallying together to help Canadians rediscover play! Recently they erected a pop-up soccer pitch in downtown Vancouver, and all weekend long visitors were treated to a game of soccer amid breath-taking views. This pop up event allowed the public of all ages and skills to come try out their footwork and dribbling skills, and many a goal was scored. As a member of the Boys and Girls Club of Canada, my daughter also attended a 2 hour soccer clinic sponsored by Canadian Tire, who outfitted all club members with a uniform…just one of those little ways you can really feel that Canadian Tire cares about the kids.
You could say that by the end of the day, my kids were in a bit of a soccer frenzy, and we’ve been kicking the ball around quite a bit since!
But, like I said, you don’t need equipment to be active, not even a ball!
- Take a walk or run or, if you have one, a bike or scooter ride ride!
- Play ‘Simon Says!’ or ‘Follow the Leader’ and incorporate jumping jacks, crab walking, running in place and other energetic moves.
- Two words: dance party!
- Go on a nature scavenger hunt with the kids, print some sheets with items to find and make it an afternoon family walk.
- Classic hopscotch anyone?
- Use couch cushions and other items to make an obstacle course, or pretend the floor is hot lava and jump across.
Encouraging active play now will help our kids keep healthy habits later in life. And that’s exactly what Canadian Tire is hoping to achieve.
So get up, get moving and tell us, or better yet show us with a picture or video, what makes you #WannaPlay, and help us to inspire Canadians to rediscover play! Upload your video to twitter to @CanadianTire, use the hashtag #WannaPlay, and you could see yourself on their website.
How do you keep kids active at home?