Everybody has been stuck inside. Even though the restrictions have recently been raised, many are still taking precautions to safeguard themselves and their family, especially with the deadly Covid-19 Delta variant around. Also, having so much to deal with on a daily basis, sometimes exercise and health get put on the back burner. We have only recently been allowed to exercise outside with masks, the parks are open but the beaches and rivers have been closed to the public since March of 2020 (edit: beaches have been recently opened for half-day). This has made it extremely difficult to keep motivated as there are no sporting events to work toward.
Most kids have been using devices for hours of the day for online school and are happy to be on these after school is over, so we, as parents, have to ensure that they maintain their balance. Exercise helps sharpen your memory. Your body also releases chemicals such as dopamine and endorphins (they make you feel good), and stimulate growth of new brain cells. It’s an investment in your mind, body and soul.
Here are some suggestions to help with motivating yourself and your kids; trust me, when you see the smiles on your little one’s faces — and how burnt out they are on the drive back home — you too will be driven to get them out for a sweat, even if it’s once or twice a week.
Ways to Get Your Children to Exercise More!
The new West Park facility located opposite The Falls West Mall has been a trending location. With a large car park to accommodate many, the large field is home to several small football groups. The field is surrounded by a paved pathway where runners, parents pushing prams, kids on bicycles, roller-skaters, skateboarders, people on scooters, as well as dogs and owners utilise this space to exercise. The Queen’s Park Savannah is also a great option for doing the same if situated in Port of Spain. Find a park in your area, invite a friend with kids, and you and yours can get your dose of vitamin D and exercise.
At home workouts are another great option! YouTube and Instagram have some awesome content that are very easy to follow (with or without equipment). Another option that is available is taking hikes; a very popular location now is called Breezy Hill to the very top of Lady Chancellor, this would be recommended for kids that are 7 years and older. It is a steep climb to the top but a stunning view of the city of Port of Spain makes it worthwhile. The wind is cool and the air is crisp.
If you need some help with specific sports, there are a few excellent coaches available for triathlon training, mountain biking, running, football and surfing, just to name a few. Kids have not been able to socialise much in almost two years and it’s a great way to encourage them to make new friends with similar interests. The groups are small due to Covid-19 protocols and mask wearing is mandatory but the fun is still 100% there.