Maybe you are an avid runner of the Boston Marathon each year, or you just like to run for fun. Either way, you might want to share that love of running with your children. For most kids, running may not seem like a great time, but it doesn’t have to be dull for them. Remember when it comes to running there are two key components: having fun and doing it safely. If you instill these into your children they will learn to love running as much as you do.
Making running fun is the best way to get your kids involved in your passion. Instead of doing drills and measuring distance you could try changing things up each time. For instance, run on a trail one day and then on a track the next. You could even set up an obstacle course on your local park trail for your children to participate in. If your children are smaller you could always try to do a version of Red Light, Green Light or Mother, May I. Also, make sure your little ones feel a sense of belonging. You could get their friends involved or sign them up for the local track team. Lastly, tell them about all the things they are doing successfully. Don’t harp on the things that aren’t going so well, but give them encouragement to keep going so they can continue to set goals and achieve them.
Running is fun, but you have to remember safety first. Teach them to always warm up before a run with dynamic stretching. This type of stretching can be fun and may even include jumping rope! Make this part fun and they will never want to skip a warm up again. Be sure that they are wearing the right gear on their feet. Their socks should be made of moisture-wicking material. Shoes vary from person to person so get them professionally fitted to be on the safe side.
If you have noticed any issues with your child’s feet don’t hesitate to call Dr. Mitchell Wachtel at (978) 794-8406 to schedule an appointment with us in one of our three Massachusetts offices: North Andover, Haverhill, or Lowell.