Getting active lets children experience the health benefits of exercise, but offers so much more. Active play helps children and youth of all ages be creative, move, try new things and test their limits. Play helps children develop mentally, emotionally and socially. Unfortunately, most Canadian kids spend their free time after school and on free time after weekends being sedentary.
The benefits of active play for your infant, child or youth include:
Improved motor and movement skills.
Creativity and use of imagination.
Development of decision-making and problem-solving skills.
Social skill development and the change to interact with other kids.
Ability to manage and control emotions.
Development of speech, language and communication skills.
The ability to laugh and have fun!
As a parent or caregiver, you have the chance to role model healthy play and activity to your child. The Northwestern Health Unit has ideas, information, resources and programs available to help get your child and family more active and experience the benefits of play.
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Source: Participation. 'Bring Back Play.' Retrieved from: www.participaction.com.