Importance of Outdoor Time for Children to Thrive and Shine

Importance of Outdoor Time for Children to Thrive and Shine

If your child spends most of his time indoors, you might want to consider encouraging him to also get some much-needed outdoor time for his mental and physical well-being.

outdoor time, kid, boy, playground, happy, smile

Why is it important for kids to get enough outdoor time?

If you really think about it, your child is probably cooped up indoors most of the week and barely gets enough sunshine and outdoor time.

From travelling back and forth to school every day on a bus or by car, to sitting there in the classroom for half the day, and then back home again to do homework and rest.

But just how important is it for kids to get adequate outdoor time and will it really affect his growth and development if he doesn’t spend enough time outside?

Benefits of outdoor time

This generation of kids have easy access to mobile devices where they can play online games endlessly. Or they watch all the latest cartoons and children’s programmes on TV. They also have the luxury of playing at an air-conditioned indoor playground away from the natural elements and unpredictable weather.

But there are many benefits to getting some outdoor time too, such as:

Good for eyesight

In Singapore, more than half of young children are short-sighted, or suffer from myopia.

But getting enough sunshine outdoor time will help to prevent your child from this eye problem.

Improves grades and behaviour

If you want your child to do well in school, there needs to be a good balance between studying indoors all day long and going outside and getting exposure to greenery.

This could help your child to do better in school and also improve his relationship with peers.

Maintains strong bones

Your kid needs Vitamin D, which helps with bone health, maintains strong bones and prevents rickets.

Certain foods contain this important nutrient, but most people can get enough Vitamin D from exposure to sunshine during outdoor time.

outdoor time, girl, smile, happy

Outdoor time can help to reduce stress

Reduces stress

If junior seems to be overwhelmed by all his homework assignments, enrichment classes, and household chores, it’s time you usher him outside to curb his stress.

A study has shown that being close to nature will help your little one to think clearly and also build his resilience against stress.

Prevents obesity

Children who are overweight or obese have an 80% chance of growing up to become overweight or obese adults in future.

Engaging in enough physical activities and outdoor play can help to prevent childhood obesity and will aid your child’s physical development as well as his general sense of well-being.

Increases attention span

Researchers have found that taking part in outdoor activities will help to reduce any ADHD symptoms in children and also improve their concentration.

It is recommended that kids get plenty of outdoor time in settings with lots of greenery, such as parks and open fields.

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Parents should encourage their children to get enough outdoor time

Family activities for outdoor time

There are all sorts of fun activities you can take part in with your kids outdoors as a whole family, including:

  • Having a picnic
  • Swimming at the beach or outdoor pool
  • Cycling
  • Fishing
  • Flying a kite
  • Hiking or taking a nature walk
  • Outdoor playground
  • Jogging
  • Have an outdoor BBQ
  • Going to the zoo or bird park
  • Camping
  • Dining at an alfresco restaurant

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