During the summer, Mr. Houseful and I are always on the lookout for things that we can do to keep the cellist (who by the way, I might have to rename after his dance recital this weekend) active during the summertime. You know the scene: laying out in front of the television, playing video games, or “relaxing” in front of the computer also playing video games. They get lazy, and moody, and just miserable in general. Mom and dad get miserable also because they remember back in the day BEGGING to go outside as soon as they woke up during summer vacation. Games of Red Light, Green Light, Red Rover and Freeze Tag peppered their days, and running around and catching Fireflies took up their evenings. Our parents had to threaten us to come into the house each night, instead of kick us out of it each day. Boy, were times so easy back then.
I think that our parents were lucky in that they didn’t have to fight so many sedentary inducing items such as computers, video games, and any other technological gadget known to mankind.
This is one reason why I was happy to be asked to team up with the Chicago Bears in order to talk about the importance of getting out and exercising throughout the summertime with summer sports.
As many of you know, the cellist is not involved in organized sports, because of his tap schedule, so we have to make our family outings a little more fun and less focused on technique, since he gets SO much of that through his dance classes. If I can get him to play a game of softball – or Piggy for you old school folk – every now and again, I feel that’s a huge win. It encourages him to run – a lot – in order to catch the softball and to also be able to hustle to get there before another player does. I must say though, that we have also gone about thinking about sports in a different manner these days too. He enjoys tossing a football around with Mr. Houseful, but can’t imagine being able to withstand running a full game of football with his peers. I call hogwash! I’ve seen him dance, and the effort that he puts forth is amazing, but we’re gentle parents, and we just expose him to lots of things so that he does have the chance to try.
It’s important to me that he stays active, and while he is getting most of his exercise daily from dance, that doesn’t continue through the summer and we’re met with the cellist who likes to lounge on the couch and do nothing. Movement is important to me, and with the rates of childhood obesity being what they are, I’m really adamant about fighting any and all instances of it from showing up in my house.
Here’s what the football camps are all about:
The Chicago Bears Youth Football Camps are safe, non-contact instruction for kids ages 6-14 and are very suitable for any kid that just wants to learn the game. They provide a station-based training format that allows campers to be divided by age and experience level so each receives the right level of instruction and support. Kids will learn to run, throw, catch, defend, form block, form tackle and explode out of their stance with proper technique and improved speed. The camps, which each run for 5 days from 9am to 3pm (that’s 30 hours active learning, instruction and fun!), do more than just introduce kids to sports, they make kids passionate about being healthy and help develop a lifelong love of fitness.
I don’t know about you, but reading that they won’t just go through drills and plays that showcase children better at the sport all day makes me feel a little bit better about my son who isn’t first in line to sign up for football. The fact that they include healthy eating options as well is icing on the cake! Showing our children how fun it can be to exercise, instead of making it another chore is key to getting them up and moving. Disguising exercise as fun activities can’t hurt either!
There are football camps located all around the Chicagoland area and those locations can be found HERE and you can also visit their Facebook page to nominate a “Healthy Hero” that has made an impact on your child’s life. The ‘Hero’ can be someone you know or just someone they admire. One “Hero” will be selected and featured in an upcoming Chicago Bears Youth Football blog.
Above all, know that you are the MAIN key to getting your children up and moving. They mimic what they see, and any type of encouragement you can give them to get that exercise each day is tantamount to any encouragement they will receive from the camp directors. It’s just that they know you.
Now, after all of that, we have a great giveaway for you all! One of my lucky readers will receive a Chicago Bears Youth Football Camps prize package which will include all that you need to get a nice game of football going in your own back yard!
To enter, all you have to do is let me know what your favorite family sport is and why in the comments below. Easy peasy! Good luck! Contest closes Tuesday, May 29,2012.
Disclosure: I was compensated for sharing my thoughts on healthy habits and exercise for children during the summer by the Chicago Bears Youth Football Camp. All opinions are my own.