20 Sep How To Incorporate Amazing Athletes’ Healthy Food and Fitness Practices Into Your Lives
Let’s be honest: getting your child to eat any new foods and away from the tablet screen to play is an entire job in itself. On top of homework, afterschool activities, sleepovers, social and sports schedules, there’s barely time to sit down and incorporate healthy food and fitness practices into your own life. We get it. Parenting is difficult, but we’re here to help ease the burden on incorporating these rituals into yours and your child’s daily lifestyle. Before you know it, your family will be more healthy and active than ever before!
3 ways to introduce fitness to your child:
- Age-appropriate sports or activities. If they’re not engaging in age or even developmentally appropriate activities, they’ll quickly become uninterested or maybe even frustrated simply because the sport or activity is too difficult for their age. So, at a young age, introduce simple physical activities, like kicking or throwing a ball around and running in the park. As they get older, you can enroll your child in multi-sport programs, like our Amazing Athletes classes, where they can get a sense of different sports and pick and choose what they do and do not like. Over time, your child will start to become more active because they’ll have found something they enjoy doing. Enjoyment equals wanting to do more of an activity, which will help them feel a sense of accomplishment, which is important for everyone to feel no matter what age you are.
- Be an active parent yourself. Children learn by example and by observing others, so it’s important that you, as a parent, instill a healthy, active lifestyle as well. Plus, if your little one sees just how much fun exercise is, they’re more likely to want to join in on the fun. We’re not saying you need to take your kids on long runs or jogs every day, but engaging in family activities or a sports league with your family is an excellent way to have fun and stay active. If you don’t have time to get outside to a park or to a sports class, simply having a family clean up day where everyone is cleaning their rooms, the house, and even doing yard work is a form of physical activity. Exercise and a clean house? Sign us up!
- Create a safe environment for discussing exercise. If your child wasn’t active before and seems unmotivated, there could be something else bothering them. Maybe they think they’re not as athletic as their friends and feel intimidated or they feel that their body doesn’t look like everyone else’s and they don’t want to engage in sports. Whatever the case, it’s important you let your child know that it’s not about being the best or being the first to win and that they always have a safe space at home to talk about health and exercise. Another key tip is to engage in conversations with your child about your own fitness goals. If they understand that you have goals of your own, they’re more likely to be motivated to create goals for themselves — no matter how big or small.
3 ways to introduce healthy eating habits to your child:
- Have regular family meals. Cooking at home is proven to be a healthier option than eating out or even ordering in meals. This way, you can prep and source healthy, fresh ingredients that you know your family will love. It also helps if your child is knowledgeable about the foods they’re going to eat, just like how we incorporate our power foods into our daily classes. To help with this, include them in the prepping process. Take them to the supermarket with you and show them why the foods you pick are good for their bodies. Once you’re home, continue the process by letting them prep and cook the meal with you. Not only will they love spending more time with you, but they’ll see how fun and interesting healthy eating and cooking can actually be. “Top Chef Junior,” anyone?
- Stock up on healthy alternatives. Instead of stocking your pantry with carby foods (which might seem like the obvious, easy option), switch them out for more filling, nutritious choices, like apples, pears, celery, fruit gummies, granola bars, and yogurts. Sure, your child can snack on the occasional “non-healthy” snack from time to time, but incorporating these items into their daily diet will help them understand why eating healthy is important.
- Don’t be too strict. Making sure not to be too restrictive is equally as important as making sure they eat a balanced meal. Creating a restrictive diet can be harmful to a child’s growth and mental well-being, according to Dr. Anne Dubner, a Houston-based nutritionist and registered dietician. Children need fatty foods and carbs for proper nerve development and fuel for their brains and bodies, so limiting this in their lives could represent a problem later down the road.
At Amazing Athletes, we know you, as a parent, simply want the best for your family. Who wouldn’t? That’s why our coaches make it their top priority to ensure our multi-sport programs and nutritional information that’s incorporated into our curriculum in a safe, healthy way, benefits every child. Not only this, but our coaches always make sure that athletes feel like they’re learning and understanding their own bodies in the process. Without all of these factors, our top-of-the-line programs wouldn’t be where they are today.