Get moving with three hours of activity a day

Worryingly many youngsters are not getting enough exercise

Exercise is so important, no matter what age your child is, and for those children ages under 5 and able to walk unaided it is recommended that children take part in 3 hours of physical activity a day.

This may sound a lot but the NHS say this activity can be a mixture of light activity - standing up, moving around, walking and less energetic play - which, if you child is anything like M, means they are taking part in activity almost from the minute they wake until the minute they go to bed.

This light activity should be mixed with some energetic physical activity which can include - running, active play, trampoline, riding a bike, dancing, swimming, skipping rope, climbing, gymnastics - all activities that get your child's heart pumping and them huffing and puffing.

I have looked at this and thought, originally, that three hours sounded a lot until a looked at what M was doing and realised that actually it is easy to reach this goal and more. Sadly the NHS state that most children are 30-60 minutes short of the goal. I find it hard to believe but then I realise how much some children are watching TV or playing video games which I haven't really done with M yet.

M has always loved playing in the house and never sits down. It amazes family when we visit and she never stops. I don't think they believe it when we say she doesn't sit still and what they see is normal so we are lucky. She has never been one to want to sit and watch the TV and usually watches a cartoon for 10 minutes before she gets bored and goes and plays. I am lucky that she doesn't want to do this and it is rare that we have children's TV on in the house so she isn't used to watching it. Don't get me wrong there are times that I actually try and encourage her to have some quiet time and have the TV on but generally she ignores this and goes off and plays.

Although going out long walks can be a problem at times (we have only just discovered M intoes when she walks and have been referred back to physio) but we generally try and do a mile walk a day (or if longer she can sit in pram of be carried). It can involve a lot of enouragment - lets race to the next lamppost, let's see how many sticks we can find, can you catch up with daddy, oh look at that doggy lets quickly go and say hello - but I believe that at this age she should be walking places if she is able to.

Of course walking our dogs is a great way to get her places too.

Another thing we have been using a lot is her bike. She loves it and will go short distances on it. At the moment she has not quite understood that she can glide on it but she is getting closer and closer to it which is great. As soon as she gets it I can see us going miles on it.

Of course now the weather is nice just playing in the garden is great. M loves playing football and loves running around playing that as well as running around and climbing up her chute. 

Luckily M also goes to a few classes a week - Gym Teds for 45 minutes on a Monday which involves a lot of climbing; Swimming lesson for 30 minutes on a Wednesday; Dancing for 45 minutes on a Thursday. On top of this we go swimming as a family at least once a week for an hour which we absolutely love.

Recently we have found that walls are a great tool for getting to walk more. She loves them and constantly asks to go up. I used to love wall when I was young to so it is great to see that she is enjoying just the same things

Now the weather is nicer (although if dry we will go anyway) I have found that we spend so much time at the park. Often we are the only ones there, even in then nicest of weather, and it puzzles me why more people are not at the park letting their children use up energy.

We try and go to the park at least 4 times a week and if M had her way we would be there 7 days a week. She loves it, even just running wild in the open space. In fact if she had her way we would never spend any time indoors and, if I am honest, I am so glad she is like this and I hope just some of her energy washes off on F and that being indoors becomes a thing of the past.

What do you enjoy doing to help you reach your physical activity goals?

Life Unexpected
Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

Training Mummy

Training Mummy is a 30 something mum to two beautiful children - a girl born February 2014 and a boy born in October 2015.


  1. This is great! I had no idea that the little ones needed 3 hours per day! Wow! I feel ashame of myself. I will need to forward this to everyone! Thank you for sharing. Great photos by the way. I really like the one where she goes for a walk. - looking very serious! lol! x #MyWildOnes

  2. What a lovely post :) And 3 hours a day? Gosh! I need to get Busby moving more! (H-Bear is constantly on the move!!!)

    Thanks for linking up to #MyWildOnes xxx

  3. You're right, it probably isn't hard to get 3 hours a day for kids, mine are the same and never keep still! It looks like you're going to be kept in your toes too! Thanks for linking up to #Whatevertheweather x