Think of all the things that have come to an end for you this year, either big or small. What do we all tend to do once that ending occurs? We look back. There are many reasons why we do this, but perhaps the most common is to remind ourselves of what we want the future to look like. Looking back allows us to reflect on what we want to repeat, improve, or avoid going forward. 2019 is coming to an end in just a few more days. Amid all the things you might look back on across the past 12 months, we hope that you acknowledge the things you want to repeat or improve on as it relates to your family's physical health.
At JumpBunch, we often say that we do not seek to build super athletes. Our goal is to encourage children of all ages and all ability levels to embrace physical activity as both fun and healthy. So when we look back, the questions we ask ourselves are how can we continue sending that message and improve upon the number of children that get that opportunity. In doing so, we have to intentionally prioritize what we do to make that happen. How does being intentional about your family's fitness goals look for you? Below are a few simple ways you can choose to use what you learn by looking back.
- Take advantage of programs at your fingertips. If you already participate in JumpBunch at your child's school, THANK YOU! Keep that going. Programs like ours and many more offer convenient ways to give exposure to fun sports activities right where they are already at. You may have opportunities to do the same at other places convenient to you. Pay attention and seize these easy ways to associate fitness and fun for your child.
- Easy is not always better. In fact, anything worth having often doesn't come easy at all. Where can you replace easy and make a healthy difference? A common opportunity is with what we eat. Fast food is, well, fast and certainly easy. How much harder is it really though to plan healthier meals and have fun with the family in doing so? Watching TV is great fun sometimes, but it's easy to do that too much. Replacing some of that time with something more active is a great way to add some intentionality to your family routine.
- Be the example. For better or for worse, your children will to a great degree do what you show them how to do. One of the hardest things as a parent is to truly acknowledge that this is a never-ending story. What does your family see you do or not do that is worth repeating (or changing) from what you see looking back?
- Have fun with the calendar. Kids love to anticipate great fun! With just a little effort you can search out and then schedule awesome physically active fun with your family that everyone can look forward to. Making exercise an "experience" just adds to the value and is a fantastic way to be intentional about where your family time goes.
- Be their biggest fan. We hear so many stories about kids being pushed to be the best or win, win, win. Of course kids want your approval and to make you happy. Look for opportunities to acknowledge their good choices and effort just to try. The wins will come naturally as they learn (from you) that winning is more about giving your best effort than about finishing first all the time.
As you look back on 2019, we hope you see plenty of opportunity to look forward! Be intentional and make room for Sports. Smiles. Fitness. and of course FUN!