7 Ways to Stay Active and Alert When You Sit At Your Desk All Day (Kids' Edition)
There’s a bit of a paradox somewhere in between the words “active” and “sit”. Is it really possible to keep your body active even when you’re seated? No way.🤔
Oh, but yes-way! And you can start your kids young as you assist them in veering away from inactive, close-to-idle-and-lethargic prolonged sitting for good. Here’s how.
1. Stand. Sit. Then, Stand, and Sit.
The ol’ sit and stand alternating move. It may be a piece of unconventional advice since many parents (we’re guilty, too) often use the phrase: “Sit still!”, due to the assumption that kids who stay still in their seats are more likely to pay attention in class or e-class than those who don’t.
Though there is a sliver of a connection between staying stone-cold still and being focused, researchers say that in many cases, it merely affects the present action yet not the behavior. Not to mention how sitting idly for long hours is bad, bad, bad for the neck, shoulders, spine, lower back, hips, and glutes to name a few.
Instead, remind your kids to sit comfortably in their kid’s office chair by having them stand up in place and then sit back down, every few minutes. This keeps blood flowing through their legs to avoid the above-mentioned slew of negative bodily impacts.
Tip: Use an adjustable standing children’s work desk to further promote this. SingBee wink-wink.😏😉
2. Walking Mini Breaks
Mini breaks are a definite must within bouts of prolonged sitting. Short walks juice up those near-stagnant joints and muscles. They also recharge the mind, recenter focus, and keep sluggishness at bay by giving the eyes a different environment to look at, besides the study area.
Encourage your kids to short-walk along or around their learning areas at home. A brisk walk from said room to the living room and back, or elsewhere within the house. Let them take their pick on which route to take. 3 to 5 minutes of this every 45 minutes works like a charm. Reduce that to 25 to 30 minutes for younger tots.
3. Mini Breaks Part 2: Window Time
One or more of the above-mentioned mini-breaks should involve walking over to a window that opens up to the crisp breeze of the outside. Proper oxygen flow to the brain begets some pretty amazing benefits since it allows the brain itself to function at its peak. This leads to a boost in performance, attentiveness, etc. Then there’s the list of long-term benefits of enhanced cognitive functions and memory, as kids age.
To make mini-breaks + window time fun-ner, you and your child can team up to create a kind of indoor map/floor design of the study area, and how it connects to the rest of the parts of the house. Draw lanes going to specific locations inside your home such as the sitting area, the kitchen counter, etc.
Don’t forget to include a designated route going towards a window in the living room, where they can stand for a couple of seconds to soak in the sun and breathe in outside air, before heading back to where X marks the spot (the study corner 😎📚).
4. Eye-Level Wall-Hangings
This number will only work assuming that the adjustable height children’s table is already facing a wall (This makes for fewer distractions. Also, there are tons of smart methods to decorate walls so that they stimulate the mind during study time. Click HERE.). For this tip, simply display a simple wall hanging directly on the eye-line of your child from where he or she is seated.
It could be anything from a motivational quote, photo, or decoration. The point is that it has to be easily identifiable from the rest of the wall’s decor. Kids can use it as a “guide” for realigning their sitting posture.
If they’re looking up at it, this means that they need to pull their shoulders and back up from slouching or sinking into the chair seat. Or that they need to adjust their ergonomic children’s desk chair to the correct height. It’s an immediate checker on posture ATM.
5. Cups of H20
The golden rule on how many glasses of this universal solvent one should drink per day ranges between 8 to 10 cups. According to experts, these numbers are for those who are 13 years old and over. For younger tykes, the ideal daily H20 amount goes as follows:
5 glasses: 5 to 8 years old
7 glasses: 9 to 12 years old
Proactively schedule H20 drinking within the scope of prolonged sitting. Every 1 to 2 hours is recommended (we’d like to point out that this is still within the context of keeping the mind and body alert when seated. H20-drinking the rest of the day is another thing).
Water is a natural “refresher” that hydrates body organs and keeps you alert and awake.
One more thing, have them use tinier-than-their-normal cups. Teeny-tiny cups come into the picture in that they won’t cause too many trips to the bathroom when virtual classes are in session.😅
6. Activity Bell-Ringing
Several non-traditional corporate offices today, those that encourage face-to-face long-ins anyway, have bells on the main floors which are rung whenever a quota or target is hit. It’s a cool and practical means of acknowledging accomplishments and breaking tensions that may have risen from the last bell ring to the most recent one.
On that note, or shall we say “ring” (No?😁), go ahead and adapt this practice at home. Depending on the duration of activities or classes, have your child ring the bell to acknowledge his or her feat, no matter how big or small.🏆✨ It’s an awesome (and immediate) emotional and mental health booster.
After each ring, share in the celebration with cheers and applause. You can also put in place a Rewards System wherein a certain number of rings per day coincide with a prize.
7. Leg and Foot Stretches
Teach your kids a few sitting stretches aimed at the legs, knees, calves, ankles, and toes. Pop culture refers to these as “Deskercises” (you can check them out online), and they’re super effective in providing kicks of energy within long hours of sitting.
One crucial point to these 7 tips is being able to schedule and space them out wisely. They’re not meant to be completed in a single go. So, start by sitting down with your children and organizing their daily-to-weekly schedules for homework, virtual classes, reading time, etc. Next, insert 1 or 2 of the 7 tips above every 30-45 minutes to an hour within their schedules (in line with the length of time allotted per task).
Finally, set an alarm per task.
Mommies and daddies, you’ll have to be hands-on in implementing these tips from time to time. At least, for now. And until your child becomes accustomed to them and is able to follow through on their own. But hey, you’ve got totes amazing kids and they’re sure to get there faster than you may expect.🤗
We’ve got tons of other suggestions ready for roll-out which can help you better support your child in home studying, in general. Turn your SingBee notifications on for news and updates, and follow us on Instagram and Facebook to be updated on all-things-SingBee. Plus, feel free to reach out to us at email@example.com.✨
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