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Ideas to motivate your children to be active

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If the thousands of athletes vying for victory this summer have you thinking about being more active, try our tips to get the whole family involved. If you're struggling to get your kids to leave the comfort of the tablets, smartphones and computers and take the plunge into the great outdoors, give these ideas a go.

Make it feel less like a chore and get their friends involved

Kids are always more inclined to do something if their friends are doing it too. If you've got a big garden, invite a couple of their friends over for a kick about. Or if you live near a park, arrange to meet their school friends there for a game of basketball, tennis, rounders or relay races.

Find a sport they enjoy

Although we all like to think our children are great at everything, when they're young, the only thing that really matters is that they enjoy what they're doing. After all, if they enjoy it, they're more likely to keep participating . Whether it's swimming, gymnastics, football or hockey that floats your child's boat, as long as they're happy and enjoying their time, then so should you.

Look for local clubs and get a routine

Routine is imperative to children; it helps to give them a sense of security and enables them to develop self-discipline . Try finding a sports club that runs once or twice a week and enrolling your children for lessons. Meeting new people and getting better at something is a fun way to add a healthy sporting structure - ideal if they're usually sat in a classroom or watching TV.

Get involved and encourage their development

You may think that you're cramping your kids' style, but showing an active interest in their activities and achievements is one of the best ways to encourage them to keep going. They'll love showing off on the court if you're stood cheering them on, and they'll treasure coming home and telling you all about that winning point in the dying seconds. So maintain your enthusiasm around them and show them just how proud you are.

Let loose and take part yourself

If you're into physical activity yourself, why not try a few things that you and your child can do together? Rock climbing and swimming are both fun options and you can inject a bit of healthy competition into each round. Even something as informal as having a kick about on the garden or investing in a basketball hoop offers a fun way to burn off excess energy.

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