tip-encouraging-children-to-walk

7 tips for encouraging your children to walk

"When are we arriving?": a question we have all asked and that every parent has heard one day or another. Make walking more than just a way of getting from A to B with these 7 tips: make it a fun way of looking after the health of your child! Walking with your child can be a wonderful experience. It's a simple activity that offers health benefits for your little protégé, as well as helping you both to bond. Walking is free as long as you're already properly equipped. So read ahead for our tips on enjoying this fun and eye-opening activity.

1 – Turn walking into an adventure

Rather than just suggesting that you go for a walk, turn your little outing into an adventure that just happens to involve walking. For example, you might suggest that you and your child explore the park and see what you can find there: a play area, river or lake perhaps. You are creating the right conditions to give your walk some meaning and encourage your child.

 

2 - Make the activity interesting

Walking is fun! You could organise a treasure hunt to find items like leaves or certain trees, or come up with a mini obstacle course where your child has to scrabble over tree trunks, jump over puddles or climb a small hill or a sand dune if you live near a beach.

It is flat paths with no surprises that are boring, not walking itself!

 

3 – Take a map with you

You'll be able to show your child where you are. It's also a chance to give them a bit of responsibility. With map in hand, your child can take the initiative and even switch up your route. This way, walking is exciting and will stimulate their imagination.

 

4 – Play "I Spy!"

This fun game is an absolute classic! Just come up with the first letter or the colour of an object you can see (e.g. a tree) and get your child to guess what you're thinking of. Now it will be their turn to make you guess what they can see!

 

5 – Give your child a camera

They can create a scrapbook of discoveries from each of your different walks. You can enjoy quality time looking over these incredible memories together when they're older.

 

6 - Take something to eat and drink...

And which your child will enjoy! You could for example bring a picnic to have during your walk. Don't forget to give your child some of it to carry in their backpack. If they have to carry something in a backpack, the child will feel a sense of responsibility - "like a grown-up"!

 

7 – Give them a pedometer

It's recommended that your child spends at least 60 minutes a day doing a moderate activity like walking in order to keep them healthy. That is equivalent to between 12,000 and 15,000 steps every day.

By monitoring your child's activity with a pedometer, you can make sure you are following these health guidelines, as well as giving them an interesting, challenging incentive to go for a walk with you.

• Top tip: while you are walking together (and why not invite one of their friends?), remember that your child sets the pace. Don't hesitate to cut the walk short at the first signs of tiredness. It's better to keep your child motivated for the next walk and enjoy regular outings that provide a host of benefits for their health!

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