How can the Internet Help Children Get Active?

In the digital age, it is easy to replace mobility with mobile phones. With convenience on our side, it is tempting to be less active.

Physical activity is an important part of a child’s mental and physical development along with overall health, so how can we merge our children’s love of technology while also helping them get in the exercise they need in order to be happy and healthy?

It is difficult to combine the two and create a middle ground. Action for Children have provided some tips and tricks on how you can use technology to encourage your children to stay active during those hot summer days, or rainy winter skies.

1. Active Video Games

It’s now possible to interact with video games in a new way. Video games, such as Wii Sports, enable you to play ‘sports’ using similar physical actions that you would if you were actually on the field or court. Research has been focusing on how active video games can be used to increase energy output and improve different elements of fitness.

Active video games are being compared to the intensity of walking, skipping or jogging. Not only are active video games a good way to inspire your child to be more active, they’re a perfect way for family to bond and play together – as they are often team, or multiplayer games!

2. Fun Apps For Smartphones And Tablets

With smartphones and tablets becoming a part of everyday life, we are able to find ways to use them to incorporate physical activities into our children’s everyday lifestyle via apps.

The App Store and Google Play have lots of apps that encourage children to exercise, and have fun! Here are some apps that Action for Children have found:

  • Walkr – A Gamified Fitness App (13+) : A space-themed adventure game in which players earn energy points for their spaceship by walking in real life.
  • Sing Song Yoga App (4+): A musical kids’ yoga program in which song lyrics instruct children how to get into poses.
  • Sworkit Kids App (7+): A kid version of an adult workout tool that provides video and verbal instructions in how to complete age-appropriate exercises. The directives are provided in multiple languages, including English, French, German, Hindi, Italian, Japanese, Russian, Simplified Chinese, and Spanish.
  • Super Stretch Yoga App (4+): Move, play and breathe as Super Stretch introduces you to his friends and their yoga poses.
  • The Walk App (12+): Created with the NHS and the UK’s Department of Health, The Walk helps you walk more every single day as you try to save the world.

Just because your children love their time behind the screen does not mean that they can’t be active while doing so. With these tips, children can find fun approaches to daily exercise in ways in which they really enjoy.