In today’s world, children are accustomed to indoor play, such as TV, video games, and cellphones. The unfortunate effect of this is children are spending less time outdoors. Playing outside has many benefits for your children and should be strongly encouraged. See the list below for just a few of the many benefits.
Improves physical health and fitness - Playing outside allows your children to run, jump, and climb all around, which are things they may not be able to do inside (or would get in trouble for). The physical activity they get from playing outside helps to combat health issues, such as obesity and heart disease, and enhances their physical fitness levels. Furthermore, research shows children who play outside have better immune systems and vitamin D levels than children who do not play outside.
Improves mental health and well-being - Playing outside is a great stress reliever for kids. Research shows that children who play outside often tend to have low anxiety and depression. Researchers suggest this is due to children being able to get an escape from their daily lives. Furthermore, the vitamin D children get from playing outside is suggested to be a factor in positivity and happiness.
Improves social skills - When children play outside, they often play in groups with other children. Being in a large, open environment helps to promote your children’s confidence and social skills because they learn how to play, interact, and communicate with the other children.
Improves imagination and exploration - Outside play usually has no structure or routine. Instead, your children are given freedom in the large, open environment of the outside world to explore their surroundings and create new, fun, and imaginative games to play.
Improves attention, focus, and academics - Allowing your children a break from routine, especially school, can improve their focus when they sit back down to do work. Furthermore, when children are given the opportunity to explore the outside world, they learn to be creative and think outside the box. Research has shown that not only do children who play outside have better attention and focus than children who do not, but they also do better academically.
As you can see, playing outside has many benefits and can improve your children’s physical, mental, social, imaginative, and academic health. Encourage your children to play outside for a little bit every day to improve their health in every aspect. As a result, you will have healthy, happy and smart children.
Cohen, Danielle. Why Children Need to Spend Time in Nature. Child Mind Institute. https://childmind.org/article/why-kids-need-to-spend-time-in-nature/
Hepp, Allyson. 5 Health Benefits of Kids Playing Outside. Care.com. https://www.care.com/c/stories/4178/5-health-benefits-of-kids-playing-outside/
Magher, Maria. The Benefits of Outdoor Play for Children. Livestrong. May 2015. https://www.livestrong.com/article/141891-the-benefits-outdoor-play-children/
McGurk, Linda. 1 Benefits of Outside Play that are Backed by Science. Rain or Shine Mamma. September 2013. http://rainorshinemamma.com/play-outside/
Seven Benefits of Outdoor Play for Children. Playtime by Faws. http://www.fawns.co.uk/blog-posts/seven-benefits-outdoor-play-children/