Let’s face it, not all teens are into sports that require physical activity. In fact, some do not even like the thought of exercise. But if you can encourage your teen to start an exercise program it may just follow them into their adult life.
You may be asking yourself how a teen can find time to exercise when school and their after school commitments take up most of the day. You fool yourself by saying they are always running around so that should count for something. It does. But it is usually not enough. We are not saying every teen should do all the physical exercies someone on a sports team does. But we are saying all teens should do 60 minutes or more of physical activity every day. Most of the activity should be moderate to vigorous aerobic activity. Aerobic activity is anything that gets your heart going. This could be biking, dancing, (this should interest even those totally opposed to exercise) or running. After they complete their aerobic activity a few minutes should be taken for some strength training. Encourage them to research and find exercises that help build muscle, boost metabolism and keep joints working well. Flexibility is the third component of a well-rounded exercise program. One example of something to do to stay flexible would be yoga.
If you are not having much luck getting your teen to exercise we suggest you start out slow with things the entire family can do. Make it a fun part of family time. There is no need for special equipment, expensive gym fees, or fancy sports outfits.
If your family is just beginning to exercise start out taking daily walks together. Slowly begin to walk a while, run a while, then walk. Once you are back home do wall push-ups together. Make it fun by seeing who can do the most and encourage the other members to set a goal to catch up. The winner will most likely try to increase his/her number so as to remain in the top spot. Everyone should do at least three sets of ten “wall push ups”. As time goes on you may find you have developed the ability to do regular pushups.
Next have everyone grab two cans of soup and use them just as you would weights. As you progress you will need to use heavier cans. Try to lift the cans over your head until your arms are straight. Do this 10 to 15 times. Rest a few seconds and repeat until you have done three sets.
Now have every family member stand behind a chair. There are several exercises that can be done using a chair for balance. For example you can do the back leg raise, the side leg raise, and the toe stand. Then to help improve your balance stand on one foot while holding onto the back of the chair. Hold for ten seconds then change to the other foot.
We think your family will have fun exercising together. We have given you a few ideas but we bet each family member can come up with at least one easy exercise you can add to the list.
If you want additional help with an exercise program and with other healthy lifestyle changes check with the professional at WeightoWellness.