Getting started

A few simple lifestyle changes can help you and your family to fit in more physical activity, it’s easier than you think. Tips for success include:

Be an active role model and plan to do some activities together

Make time each week to be active and have fun as a family – go for a walk, swim or cycle together, or go to the park for a kick about or to play Frisbee®.

Set a challenge

Kids love a challenge – setting them a task is a great motivator and will keep them focused. Remember not to make things too hard and keep it fun. Some challenge ideas include:

  • How many times can you throw and catch a ball between you without dropping it?
  • How many skips can you do in a minute?
  • How long can you balance on one leg?

Encourage your child to try different activities

They say that variety is the spice of life and it’s certainly true when it comes to physical activity. There are lots of different ways to be active, including trampolining, circus skills and dancing.

Help to practice basic skills

Children need to learn basic skills before they can progress onto more complex activities – teach them how to throw, catch, run and jump. Multi-skills clubs can help with this – contact your local council sports development officer for details of multi-skills clubs in your area.

Praise and reward effort

We all like to be praised for our efforts and children are no different. Praising your children for being active will encourage them to continue – remember to be positive about accomplishments, big and small, and to reward persistence and ‘the taking part’.

Find active alternatives

Swapping inactive behaviours for more active ones like walking your child to school instead of driving them in the car or getting younger children to walk instead of constantly pushing them in the buggy is a great way to fit more activity into a busy day. Remember all these small changes add up and can make a big difference.