Exercising before sports is a really important activity for kids to do – not just for health purposes, but also for teaching ideas such as preparation and getting kids into the spirit of the sports activity or game they are about to play. In this post, we will review the benefits of kids exercising before sports, as well as types of exercises activities, and even a few awesome and fun exercise games that kids can do before any physical activity.
Why Should Kids Exercise Before Sports?
Kids exercise before sports activities is important for these reasons:
- Builds confidence
- Teaches responsibility and preparation
- Prevents injuries
- Develops and enhances sports performance
- Promotes teamwork and chemistry
Benefits of Kids Exercise Activities:
The above reasons are all part and parcel as to why exercise activities are crucial for kids to do before sports. Confidence is something that can be both taught and learned – by having kids exercise before they perform various sports activities, they are mentally readying their minds and bodies to perform at a high level. The physical sensation of loosening up will give them mental (and physical) confidence to perform better in the sport activity that they undertake.
Preparation is also key. This is something that kids don’t really learn until later in life, but by preparing for sports by taking responsibility and exercising properly, they are learning that preparation is both an important and advantageous responsibility to take on.
Injury prevention is also an underrated aspect of kids exercising before sports. Most people assume that injuries only happen to adults, but kids can also get hurt. One interesting stat to take note of: kids who spend more hours per week playing sports than their age number are 70% more likely to get injured.
It goes without saying that kids will probably perform better, (or at least at their peak levels) if they exercise before they play sports. By going through the motions of the sport they are playing, they will physically ready their bodies, and prime themselves to undertake those same physical actions at a higher level, since they’ve essentially practiced beforehand. Read below to see more specifics as to what exercises are important for which sports.
Teamwork can also be taught with kids exercise activities. By having kids warm up together, you can encourage kids to help each other, and motivate each other by seeing everyone taking it seriously and exercise together.
Best Kids Exercise Activities Before Sports:
Depending on the sport your kids are playing, there are a ton of exercises to choose from that will benefit your kids. Obviously you don’t want to overdo the exercises, but a solid pre-sports workout for kids is about 10 minutes long, and should not be too strenuous.
- Jumping jacks
- Knee hugs
- Slow walking knee hugs
- Arm circles
- Leg swings
Best Kids Exercise Games Before Sports:
Depending on the the age of your kids, it might be tricky to get them to commit to a proper warm up or exercise activity. That is precisely when kids’ warm-up and exercise games come in handy: kids will enjoy getting into the exercise phase, and should be ready to start playing sports pretty quickly.
- Hide and seek
- Dance kids party
- Obstacle course
- Balloon ball
- Follow the leader
- Simon Says
- Sports game mimicking
Best Cool Down Exercises for Kids after Sports:
Why are cool down exercises important for kids after playing sports? Just like pre-sports exercise is important for various reasons, so too are post-sports exercises for cooling down.
- Leg stretching
- Chest stretching
- Arm stretching
- Core stretching
- Light running
- Jumping jacks
- Light exercise mimicry
Featured image used with permission from Flickr and Creative Commons license.