Remember the days of going to the park, climbing trees, riding a bike, playing hopscotch with your friends and splashing in puddles on rainy days?
We do! And as parents we want our kids to get the most out of playing outdoors. There are so many benefits, especially when it comes to your child’s development.
Physical and Mental Wellbeing
Children are often more active outside, and an increase in fitness levels will help their muscles and bones grow as they do. Plus, the fresh air and sunshine even during the winter seasons, enables them to absorb vitamin D and release endorphins that lead to a happier and healthier mind.
To adults, a stick is a simple object but to a 6-year-old it’s a magical wand, or a pen to draw pictures in the sand with. Outdoor play and objects are shown to stimulate a child’s imagination and creativity – freeing them from the physical boundaries of a room and opening a world of opportunities.
Being in a big open space gives kids the chance to meet people, make new friends, and are more likely to participate in games and outdoor activities. Teamwork, learning to share, and have empathy towards others are all vital skills towards their growth as people in the future.
By using outdoor equipment such as climbing frames, sandpits, and play trail puzzles kids are quick to solve problems, know how to work with unfamiliar objects, and learn to process information outside of the classroom in a fun way.
According to Andy Simpson (chairman of The Wild Network), “The tragic truth is that kids have lost touch with nature and the outdoors in just one generation,” with the influence of the media, online gaming, phones, and TV continuing to glue kids to a screen.
Unfortunately, this domineering shift in technology has had a negative impact on children’s connections to the world, as well as affecting their communication and health.
With outdoor play, kids gain an appreciation of nature and its many wonders! Discovering new things, taking risks, and having the confidence to be independent away from adult supervision is all part of growing up.
If you want your kids to be more active outdoors, we suggest taking them to the park, arranging play dates at least once a week, using your garden as a safe enclosed space, and buying outdoor toys like electric ride-on cars to keep your kids happy!