Wouldn’t you agree that one thing about childhood that you can clearly recall is the abundance of energy you had as a kid?

Days could be filled with hours of running, jumping, swimming or climbing and you would still be able to wake up the next day at 6am ready to go again!

As we grow older our energy levels seem to oversleep and miss that wake-up call. Have you heard of this latest phenomenon – snoozing our metabolisms?

Now as adults, having been on both sides of the spectrum, we know how important physical activity is to a daily routine. It positively impacts our physical, emotional, mental and social well-being. So in knowing that, children are no different and they need that daily engagement to expand their minds, energy and goals.

The role of a parent is one of the most influential sources when it comes to incorporating physical activity into a daily routine.

One prominent way to engage children is to encourage structured play, which is any organized activity or sport that comes with a set of rules and specific objectives to achieve the ending goals. By implementing structured play into your household it allows you to see that children can learn many life skills, primarily:

  • Social competency with peers
  • Teamwork
  • Rules and boundaries
  • Goals and objectives

Think back for a second about your first team sport experience.  Maybe you recall the friends you made, or scoring your first goal. Maybe you remember the first time you got injured. All of these experiences are different from one another but all have impacted the lives we lead now. Making those friends helped our confidence grow in regards to social connections, scoring that goal proved we can achieve what we set our mind to, and getting past the injury meant that we were strong enough to make it through anything!

Five ways that structured play can benefit a child’s life are:

  1. Children have the chance to find and develop a connection to their own self-identified and self-guided interests.
  2. In structured play children learn to make decisions, solve problems, exert self control and follow rules.
  3. Children learn to handle their emotions in play, primarily fear or anger.
  4. Children learn to make friends and get along with each other as equals.
  5. Most importantly, play is a source of happiness for children to positively impact their moods.

Now that you have “tossed” around the idea of why you should get your children engaged in structured play, it’s time to make a move and get the ball rolling!

The silver lining for parents is that it motivates you to reclaim your energy! So say “bye bye” to those snooze buttons, reality is waiting and it’s time to WAKE UP!