Why Active Play is so Important

Young children need active play to develop properly and to help ensure life-long health. Physical activity should begin as soon as possible and remain steady throughout each day. Encourage them to work on many skills in a variety of safe, play environments.

Young children need regular, vigorous, physical activity – active play – to develop and grow properly. A physically active lifestyle is crucial for life-long health and physical and emotional wellbeing.

Physical activity means taking part in active play that uses the body’s large muscles. Children should get outside when possible and should experience a range of activities and games. This activity doesn’t always have to be structured, but it should be vigorous. Active play is just as important for children with a disability, though some activities may have to be modified.

Start encouraging physical activity at the infancy stage. Use toys to prompt movement. Unless they are sleeping, children under six shouldn’t be inactive for more than 60 minutes at a time. Reducing screen time will help keep this schedule intact.

Because children need to develop a range of body control, locomotor and sending and receiving skills, it’s imperative that they experience a variety of activities. Engage with the child at times and leave them alone at others. Just be sure they are safe.

Being a positive role model will help with their development, so make you’re being active, too!

Learn more about active play.