Keep the kids active this summer
The final school bell will ring later this month, signalling the start of the summer holidays for many families. Parents anxious at the prospect of keeping their little ones active and entertained for six weeks will love Change4Life’s 10 Minute Shake Up!
The shake up campaign aims to keep kids active this summer and inspire parents and kids to reach their 60 minutes of recommended activity per day. Whether the kids want to dance, skip or ride bikes, Change4Life has loads of ideas to get kids in Merton to move for an extra 100,000 minutes this summer.
Dr Andrew Murray, a local GP and Chair of NHS Merton Clinical Commissioning Group, “Most children should do 60 minutes or more of physical activity every day to really get their hearts pumping. Doing 10 minute bursts of activity is an easy way to help them do this. Not only will it make them feel good, but it will help keep their heart, bones and weight healthy.
“Making physical activity a part of a child’s daily routine is not only fun and healthy, but doesn’t need to cost anything. What’s more, children who are physically fit sleep better and are better able to handle physical and emotional challenges.”
NHS Choices advises the five steps to help children maintain a healthy weight:
1. Be a good role model
Children learn by example. One of the most powerful ways to encourage your child to be active and eat well is to do so yourself.
2. Encourage 60 minutes of physical activity a day
All children need about 60 minutes of physical activity a day for good health, but it doesn’t need to be all at once.
3. Keep to child-size portions
A good rule of thumb is to start meals with small servings and let your child ask for more if they are still hungry.
4. Eat healthy meals, drinks and snacks
Children, just like adults, should aim to eat five or more portions of fruit and vegetables every day. They’re a great source of vitamins, minerals and fibre.
5. Less screen time and more sleep!
Help your children avoid sitting and lying around too much as this makes them more likely to put on weight.
To find activities locally in Merton visit the Change4Life website, enter your postcode, select whether it’s an indoor or outdoor activity you’d like and the number of children involved, and a range of local activities will appear to choose from.
Sign up to receive a free 10 Minute Shake Up pack containing a stopwatch, wall chart and activity cards as well as reward stickers and a host of Disney inspired fun ideas for short bursts of 10 minute activity.
In June 2015, Merton CCG joined Merton residents and businesses in the pan-borough “Merton on the Move” campaign. This encourages people of all ages to get active by walking, jogging, running or cycling the 250,000 mile distance from Merton to the Moon. Participants record their journeys via the ‘Merton on the Move’ website or through a free mobile phone app, contributing to the overall target of reaching the Moon.
The Merton on the Move initiative came about after Public Health England launched 'Everybody active, every day', an evidence-based approach to improve the nation's health through everyday activity. It had shown that over one in four women and one in five men do less than 30 minutes of physical activity a week.
Find out more about Merton on the Move here.
July 15, 2015