It’s time to power down and get our kids moving – not just today, but every day. Did you know Canadian kids spend an average of 7 hours and 48 minutes a day in front of screens? As ParticipACTION tells us, this adds up to more time over the course of a week than their parents spend at work.
According to Canadian Pediatrician, Dr. Dina Kulik, “there is plenty of evidence that kids should be active at least 60 minutes a day for optimum health”. In fact, research tells us kids who get at least an hour of daily physical activity or active play, are better behaved, sleep better, and perform better in school. “In this age of multiple screens, we see far too much obesity, high blood pressure, and diabetes in even young children,” says Dr. Kulik, who advises parents to swap some screen time for outdoor play, a family walk, or a trip to the playground.
As a parent, I understand some of the challenges other parents face in reducing screen time and helping their children to get moving. In posts I wrote for ParticipACTION, I shared one creative way I got my youngest daughter moving, and urged parents to put down their devices as one means of carving out quality time with their kids. In a future post, I’m planning to share how my youngest daughter’s interest in tennis, sparked my own return to the game a few years ago, and how tennis has brought our family closer, reduced our screen time, and helped us to be more active.
In the meantime, if your kids spend too much time in front of screens (the odds are very high they do) try some of the following tips:
Cheers to all,
Active Living Ambassador & Senior Writer, Tennis Canada