Stay ac­tive dur­ing term time

Pilbara News - - Education - Ali­cia Per­era

School is al­most back, and with it can come par­ent con­cerns for their chil­dren’s ev­ery­day health.

The WA Heart Foun­da­tion has some tips to re­duce those wor­ries and help keep chil­dren eat­ing healthily and stay­ing ac­tive this term.

One ma­jor chal­lenge chil­dren face come school time is get­ting enough phys­i­cal ex­er­cise out in the fresh air, well away from a desk or com­puter.

The foun­da­tion rec­om­mends park­ing a lit­tle fur­ther from school and walk­ing in, buy­ing com­fort­able school shoes chil­dren can run around in and re­serv­ing times to play a sport or at a play­ground with your chil­dren.

Heart Foun­da­tion car­dio­vas­cu­lar health direc­tor Trevor Shilton said walk­ing or rid­ing to school was an­other sim­ple way chil­dren could get extra daily ex­er­cise.

“Th­ese days around 70 per cent of chil­dren are reg­u­larly driven to and from school, com­pared with 16 per cent in 1970,” he said.

“Our lives are busy and we are driv­ing be­cause we feel it will save time.”

“But small op­por­tu­ni­ties to walk or ride more of­ten will help chil­dren to re­alise there are ways to travel other than in a car — (and) walk­ing or rid­ing to­gether is a great ex­pe­ri­ence for par­ents and chil­dren to share.”

Healthy eat­ing can also be a source of back-to-school anx­i­ety.

For al­most any par­ent, pack­ing more than 200 lunches a year is a daunt­ing task.

Tips from the Heart Foun­da­tion in­clude plan­ning chil­dren’s lunch­boxes ahead of time, pack­ing healthy snacks they can eas­ily eat on the go, and in­clud­ing a frozen wa­ter bot­tle for re­fresh­ment.

You can see more tips for eat­ing well and ex­er­cis­ing as a fam­ily by go­ing to the Live Lighter web­site, LiveLighter-for-Fam­i­lies/AtS­chool/.

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