There are several ways in which the younger generation of today is different from our generation, and I genuinely appreciate many of these contrasts, barring one. Today’s kids don’t spend much of their time playing outside.
Parents who are reading this, please make the time to encourage your children to turn off their screens and head outside for a while.
Encouraging them to play outside won't only mean finding joy in unstructured, physically stimulating games, there are also numerous studies to prove that playing outdoors is essential for your kid’s physical and emotional well-being. If you are still not convinced, let me give you seven good reasons.
1. Excellent Physical Growth:
Playing outside is the best and most enjoyable form of exercise for kids. Throwing a ball, riding a bicycle, jumping and running, all these activities develop motor skills, build stamina, and strengthen muscles. The list goes on.
You can also consider getting your kid a wagon. Pushing a wagon constantly takes a lot of effort, making it a great form of exercise - it's even better if the wagon is a two-seater!
This way your kids can exercise, interact, explore and have fun together, which will teach them the importance of teamwork.
2. . Dose of Vitamin-D:
Recent research suggests a lack of exposure to sunlight is one of the primary causes of Myopia in our children. A new theory explains how the UVB ray from the sun boosts the circulation of Vitamin-D in our body and helps prevent the onset of Myopia.
That’s why it’s important to encourage your kids to play outside for at least 40 minutes a day to promote healthy eye growth. Increased Vit-D level also strengthens bones and builds a strong immunity.
3. Developed Sensory Skills:
Playing outside demands using all of the five senses. Hearing the playmates running (hearing), seeing the ball coming toward him (sight), identifying the scent of flowers (smelling), feeling the dewiness of grass against skin (touch), tasting a freshly plucked apple (taste). All these help to develop perceptual abilities.
4. Stress Reduction:
Childhood stress and anxiety is a thing. A very serious thing. Sitting at home, doing no physical activity make things even worse. If you can allow your children to play outdoors, you will see dramatic improvements in their mood. Running with pets, a tug-of-war game with the neighborhood kids, and exploring the lawn on a wagon - these are the best kind of stress-relievers.
5. Improve Social skills:
Children today play a lot of games onlines, and whilst some online gaming is not inherently bad, playing outside with other children is a thousand times better at developing cognitive competency and social skills.
Playing a team sport or simply building sand castle with a friend will immensely improve their communication, behavioral and organisational skills.
6: Increases Attention Span:
Children learn to take responsibilities, communicate more often, and exhibit a high attention span when they play in the open. Children diagnosed with Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) are often recommended playing outside as treatment.
Allowing children to climb a tree, watch the sun melting in the horizon, feel their skin against the dewy grass, or swim in a lake, is to allow them some of the simplest pleasures in life.
7. Improved Sleep:
A sedentary lifestyle can mess with our body’s circadian clock as well. Insomnia, frequent mood swings, depression, and stunted physical growth are a few possible consequences of this. Exposure to daylight is an effective way to reset your kid’s biological clock and help your baby actually sleep like a baby.
Meet Alvina Emmy
Alvina Emmy, a full-time mother of two gorgeous kids and a part-time blogger. Parentloves.com is my humble attempt to lend a helping hand to all those new parents, soon-to-be parents and caregivers who want only the best for their kids.