How to get your kids to love running
It’s only natural that you want your kids to love the same things you do. Getting your children involved in your activities gives everyone a chance to spend time together. Participating in a sport helps kids stay fit and healthy, too. Here are some tips to help to get your children running with you – and enjoying it.
Make it fun
Kids of all ages love to play. Don’t try to make running a serious pursuit while they are young. Mix up the courses that you run on. Explore local parks and trails, or take them for laps at a stadium or school oval. Play running games like tag, create themed runs where everyone dresses up or plan in an obstacle course at a local playground.
Stay supportive and involved
If you have children running for gym class, they may come home complaining that they don’t like it. Schools can unintentionally create a competitive atmosphere, so it can be really useful to share your running experience with your child. Show them it’s not always about coming first. Other skills like accurate pacing, and safely improving times or distances are important too. For older kids, spend time explaining the mechanics and run with them, at their pace, to give them encouragement. Encourage them to run to their strengths. Like us, some kids are better suited to sprints, others to longer distances.
Get friends together
Most things are more fun when your friends are involved, and when you get children running together it’s no exception. Kids love to play around with friends, and meeting up to run once a week can be a great way to do that. Get creative with the variations mentioned above to keep it interesting. If your kids are old enough to be goal oriented, you can start to set times or distances to be met. They can compete against themselves or try to beat their friends.
Let them find the reason
It’s easy to push your kids to enjoy the things you care about. Don’t force them to run. Give them opportunities to discover how good it can feel. Take them to watch races, or sign up for a community fun run. If they can discover the joy and develop intrinsic motivation, you’ll have lifelong runners in the family for another generation.
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Whilst Enertor has over 18 years Orthotics experience, our blog content is provided for informational purposes only and it is not a substitute for your own doctor’s medical advice. Enertor advises anyone with an injury to seek their own medical advice – and do not make any health or medical related decisions based solely on information found on this site