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Let's Get Our Kids Outside

Date: 

Monday, 16 May, 2016
Our children are spending less than an hour a day playing outside which is a third of the time enjoyed by their grandparents’ generation. Our Parks is on a new mission to get kids outside.

Whether it is at the swings, on the beach, in the park or in your back garden, children virtually all love to be outdoors yet more than one in nine children has not set foot in a park, forest, beach or any other natural environment for at least a year.

The team at Our Parks knows the benefits of outdoor activity first hand as we witness the change and improvements made to children and their families as they join in our classes. We have been receiving incredible feedback from parents about the positive effects of outdoor exercise on their children’s behaviour and family wellbeing.

So we decided to look a bit closer at the effects of outdoor play on kids and families and were shocked to learn that a new report, backed by the UK Government, has found that, despite our beautiful parks and green spaces, almost a third of children in England only play outside for 30 minutes or less a day and that 1 in 5 children don't play outside at all.

Persil’s campaign, #DirtisGood, compares the amount of exercise our children get with inmates in a maximum security prison and judging by the research findings, we couldn’t agree more.

 

Research shows that our kids today state ‘screen time’ as their favourite activity. Now, our children do what we say (most of the time) and this inactivity crisis, with children's activity levels being at their lowest for 2 decades, must be a large part down to us not taking our kids outside often enough.

Our children are spending less than an hour a day playing outside which is a third of the time enjoyed by their grandparents’ generation. A questionnaire of 7,000 7 -12 year olds taken by the National Trust found that we are at risk of traditional outdoor activities dying out.

The Benefits of Outdoor Play:

Getting our kids to play outside is usually FREE and not only helps their physical health but also helps them build their immune system, practice problem solving skills and tops up all-important vitamin D. They also learn to play better with other children while learning to respect bugs, birds, animals and the natural environment.

How Can We Change?

Health experts are calling for a radical change to the habits of today’s children (you may have heard of initiatives such as Woodland Schools and the 1 Mile before school run) and Our Parks, which was founded in 2014 with the mission of providing our community with free access to exercise, are now extending this mission to specifically include children.


 

 

Our Solution:

SuperHero Fitness aimed at girls and boys aged between 3-11, brings out the super fit in in a no-pressure, fun and all-inclusive 30-minute session. The sessions have been tried and tested to great acclaim in Beddington Park, Sutton & Fairfield Recreation Ground, Kingston, and we are rolling them out across our boroughs. Alongside Superhero Fitness , children are welcome at ALL Our Parks classes when accompanied by an adult and our coaches will adapt the class to suit your kids.

5 Things to Do To Get Your Kid's Oudoors and Active

  1. The National Trust have come up with some amazing activities called 50 Things to Do Before You Are 11¾” campaign
  2. If you would like to read more about the #Dirtisgood campaign head over to http://www.dirtisgood.com/uk/home.html
  3. Walk to school - this is such a great way for your kids to start the day
  4. Swap an hour of TV after school for a trip to your local swings
  5. Find your local Our Parks class and bring the family down!

It’s never to late to change our children’s habits…help us spread the word and get your children experiencing what you experience at their age.

Please contact Anneka on getfitnow@ourparks.org.uk if you would like to see a Superhero Fitness class in your area.

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