Early Years (under 5 and walking)
The Chief Medical Officers physical activity guidelines for under fives who are capable of walking say that:
- Children should be physically active daily for at least 180 minutes (three hours), spread throughout the day
- All under fives should minimise the amount of time spent being sedentary (being restrained or sitting) for extended periods (except time spent sleeping)
How to get them active
Examples of physical activity that should be encouraged include:
- Outdoor time - walking/skipping to the shops, a friend's home, the park or to and from nursery/school
- Adventure time - energetic play such as using a climbing frame, riding a bike or playing running and chasing games
- Dance time - Dance around the house to music or sing nursery rhymes and do the actions
- Bath time - Make it fun with lots of singing and splashing. Or why not try a parent and toddler swim session
Help your child move and play every day
The British Heart Foundation National Centre for Physical Activity and Health (BHFNC) has put together a leaflet for parents and carers of children under five (who are able to walk), with practical physical activity ideas and how these can be incorporated into a daily routine. Download it here.
Time to Dance
Singing and dancing is a great way for you and your child to get active and have some fun together!
Websites such as YouTube have lots of great short films available featuring songs with actions for children.