We’ve all been there. Yes, there was a time when you could barely stroll around your own home without accidentally trampling your little boy as he scampered all over the house. Whether or not your child was ‘active’ was most likely the last thing on your mind back in those days.
Then everything changed. You noticed that he wasn’t as active anymore and you started to worry.
Well, maybe your son doesn’t run around anymore, but that’s okay. There are other ways he could be active.
It’s no great secret that schools push our children to be their very best. That’s a great thing, of course, but all kids are different. Not every boy wants to be a professional footballer. Not every boy wants to run 1500 meters. Well, nobody really wants to run 1500 meters, but sometimes schools pitch traditional sports or activities as the only option for exercise.
The problem is that this creates a culture in which many boys aren’t active at all.
If your son just isn’t into popular sports or events, it can discourage him from physical activity. Many boys, when they reach those pre-teen or teen years, are simply going to favor gaming or other immobile or less-mobile activities, because such hobbies actually stimulate their brain.
It all comes down to your son’s interests. Not all physical activities have to fall into the category of ‘traditional’ sports.
Some forms of exercise can appeal to boys of all backgrounds, all mentalities and all interests. These activities might loosely classify as ‘sports’, because not all sport involves kicking a ball or running a ridiculously tiring track event.
Uh oh. Karate. Isn’t that just fighting with robes and colorful belts? Well, not really. Karate can be incredibly rewarding for young minds. If your son prefers activities which require great concentration, focus and patience, then karate could be perfect for him.
Aside from the obvious physical benefits of such a fast-paced activity, it can help young boys to calm their minds, make friends and actually have fun while they’re physically active.
2. Going to the Gym
There are so many benefits of keeping kids active, but it’s easy to forget that when we’re preoccupied with concern over their schoolwork and overall future. While your young boy shouldn’t be lifting the 100 lb dumbbells just yet, teenage boys can find it immensely satisfying to try out the other shiny equipment and activities that gyms have to offer (if they’re still too young to join your local gym, some home equipment is fantastic).
A pullup bar is essentially the same as the monkey bars your son climbed when he was very little. But while he thinks he’s just ‘messing around’ on that equipment, you don’t have to tell him that he’s improving his muscles, bone strength and balance, do you?
This may not be a favorite for most boys, but perhaps your boy isn’t like ‘most boys’. Perhaps he hates sport because that just isn’t him. He might only care for creative outlets.
Well, dancing is one of the most artistic physical activities on earth. There is no better way to express your creativity and passion through physical movement. Contemporary dance comes in many different forms, so if you know your son just wants to express himself through art, maybe you could suggest a local class.
4. VR Gaming
If your son’s a gamer, why not get him up on his feet? Okay, so maybe he doesn’t have to always ‘leave the house’ as such. Still, much like the Nintendo Wii (which came out a decade ago; do you feel old yet?), virtual reality is an interactive and physical form of gaming. It’s much better than sitting around for hours on end.
Some boys have incredible imaginations and they want to escape within the world of fantasy. This is no bad thing, of course, so why not combine that with what is essentially an aerobic activity? Most virtual reality games require continuous physical movement, which can often be quite strenuous. This is healthy for a young boy, as any cardio can get the heart pumping and blood moving.
So, if you’re struggling to get your son moving, maybe it’s time to stop suggesting common sports and instead suggest something related to their existing interests.
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