*Cue communal sigh from exhausted parents across Sydney*
We hear you! Routines, rules, schedules, and sanity have flown out the window since we began learning from home. While we’re all trying to get our heads around ‘new maths’ and getting our own work done, one burning question remains for our modern saints, AKA school teachers – How do you manage kids’ energy levels and focus?
While we can’t help you with the homework related questions, we can tell you the simple answer to your question is MOVEMENT!
More movement motivates
While it might feel like we’re constantly telling our kids to get back to work, being intentional with their time away from their desks could be the key to improving performance and stamina while learning from home.
- Energy levels: Studies show just 20 minutes of exercise can reduce fatigue by 65%. Stimulation of the central nervous system works to increase energised feelings and ward away the dreaded ‘…but I’m tired…’ chant.
- Endorphins: Feeling like a new person after a sweat-sesh is thanks to the release of mood-boosting hormones like serotonin and dopamine – our little ones feel that same encouraging and motivated mood post-movement.
- Improves sleep: This may seem like a no-brainer, but did you know serotonin is a precursor for melatonin? Ensuring more intense energy-burning activities are 3-4 hours before bedtime helps this process take effect.
- Maintaining overall health: Extended periods of being sedentary can lead to muscle weakness and slow of bodily functions like metabolism. Regular changes in activity help stimulate these systems and increase attentiveness – sounds like a win-win to us!
Actively avoiding aches and pains
We know from our own experiences that sitting at our desks all day can cause stiffness and soreness. Without walking between classes, running around at recess or the usual day-to-day movements, a lot of our kids would be feeling these aches and pains for the first time.
Did you know maintaining the same posture for more than 25 minutes can begin the process of ‘ligamentous creep’? The slow stretching of ligaments causes pain as an early warning that the position you’re in may have negative impacts on your body.
As sporting activities kick off post-lockdown, our kids are more at risk of injury due to deconditioning, potentially resulting in ligament sprains, strains and muscle aches. Keeping sports-specific training as part of your routine can help prevent these types of injuries.
Aside from encouraging accountability (for both you and your kids), working out together can inspire intentional family time and highlight the lifelong lesson of keeping active. Here are some family-friendly suggestions for keeping active together:
- Get your kids to run a sports-specific training session for you – ask your keen netballer or soccer player to show you what they get up to at training.
- Bust a move to the video-game classic ‘Just Dance’ on YouTube.
- Make up a dance routine with your budding ballerina.
- Set up a family Olympics with household items.
- Challenge your kids to agility-train the dog, running and jumping alongside them.
While regular aches and pains are a normal part of life, they shouldn’t stick around or impact your day-to-day, so please consult your allied health professional.
Tensegrity Sports Clinic’s team of health professionals are available for telehealth or COVID safe in-person appointments across their Bella Vista, Dee Why, Eastwood, St Leonards and Wahroonga locations.
Tensegrity’s highly trained team are experts in movement and function and provide accessible treatment for muscle, bone, joint, tendon and ligament injuries, and muscular pain.
The team aspires to restore client health to the highest level by eliminating muscular pain and create a space for people to reach their full physical and performance potential.