We all want the best future possible for our children, both physically and mentally. The relationship between a strong, fit body and a healthy mind may be more interlinked than you originally thought.
Exercise has a direct positive effect on your child’s brain development. How?
- Exercise improves oxygen and nutrient delivery to all your body’s organs, including the brain. A better-nourished brain can grow and develop faster and more efficiently. This is why encouraging your child to run around will probably make them smarter than getting to sit at a desk and memorize for most of the day.
- Exercise stimulates the growth of new cells in the brain’s region responsible for memory.
- Exercise increases the levels of the hormones such as BNDF, which are responsible for intra-communication between the brain’s different regions. This improves creativity and capacity for learning in your child.
- Balance and jumping activities improve your child’s perception of space and spatial awareness. This provides your kid with a framework for reading, organization and other academic skills.
For your child to get all the exercise benefits they should be physically active for 20 to 30 minutes per day for 3 to 5 days a week.
Exercise will benefit your child throughout their childhood, but you will also be setting them up for a lifetime of healthy habits. Once they fall in love with a sport, they won’t be able to give it up easily. Being physically active from a young age makes it much easier for them to stay healthy as they grow up and move through different life stages.
Encourage physical activity as much as you can throughout all stages of your child’s development. This can be a specific sport or class they enjoy, but you should also be encouraging a generally healthy and active lifestyle alongside it. Teach them to take the stairs instead of the lift, and to walk wherever possible. Remember, the best way to do this is to lead by example!