Exercise for Kids
Exercise and physical activity are vital for the physical, mental and social wellbeing of children and adults alike. Currently, less than a quarter of Australian kids are meeting the physical activity guidelines of 60 minutes of movement per day! Physical activity provides children with a wide range of developmental and health benefits. Regular physical activity from a young age increases the likelihood to sustain an active lifestyle as an adult, resulting in better quality of life.
Our Exercise Physiologists use evidence-based practice to empower parents and their children to participate in an active lifestyle. At EmPower we enjoy working with parents to develop strategies to make exercise enjoyable and attainable for their families. We create tailored exercise programs to foster social skills and self-confidence, in order to increase a child’s participation in school, community and recreational activities.
How Exercise Physiology can benefit your child:
- General skills, eg balance, coordination, jumping, gait, bike riding, climbing
- Sports Skills, eg catching, striking, throwing, kicking, agility, hand eye coordination
- Improved functional capacity and mobility
- Endurance with performing fine and gross motor tasks
- Development of grip strength, core strength and posture to support movement
- Improved coordination, body awareness and confidence to participate in physical activity at school and within the wider community
- Foster a sense of belonging, self-achievement and social engagement within sports and recreational activities
- Strategies and motivational interviewing to encourage family engagement in physical activity
- Collaboration with teachers, carers and parents to develop achievable, realistic and beneficial exercise routines
- Improved muscle tone to help manage fatigue and concentration
- Assistance and strategies for sensory and emotional regulation, including use of equipment and aids
- Tailored exercise prescription to meet individual sensory needs
- Provision of tasks and activities that allow opportunities to implement self regulation strategies
As part of a multidisciplinary model: Exercise Physiologists can facilitate social skill learning such as turn taking, following instructions, awareness of others and communication through integration into exercise sessions. Multidisciplinary groups provide additional opportunity to practice social and communication skills.
Introducing, encouraging and supporting all children to participate in physical activity is essential to help children learn how to move and use their bodies for daily living.
Every element of physical activity can positively impact the quality of life your child will experience as they develop and grow. An increased gross motor skill capacity provides greater opportunity for your child to be involved in community and social activities. While taking part in social and community events, your child, through tailored prescription, will have been developing the social skills and emotional regulation to actively participate, engage with others & have an absolute blast – whether it be at a dance class, soccer game or within the playground.
By choosing to assist your child’s development and achieving meaningful milestones in a supportive and positive environment, your child will foster and ingrain the many physical, social and emotional benefits of physical activity habitually across their lifespan. Developing the healthy habit of participating in regular physical activity assists with weight management, cardiovascular fitness, strength, improved functional capacity, coordination and physical activity tolerance. Improvements in these areas help to build self confidence and ultimately result in your child achieving independence in adulthood and living a longer, healthier and happier life.
Paediatric Frequently Asked Questions
- Down Syndrome
- Neurodevelopmental Disorders: Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD),
- Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), Global Developmental Delay (GDD)
- Neurological Disorders: Cerebral Palsy (CP), Muscular Dystrophy
- Respiratory Conditions: Asthma, Cystic Fibrosis
- Emotional and Sensory Regulation Issues
In paediatric allied health therapy, there is a lot of overlap in the services offered by the different professions. OT, Physio and EP will all engage children in some form of physical activity through play, an exercise program, or lifestyle intervention. However, the focus of each profession is slightly different.
Occupational Therapy: helps children with physical, sensory, or cognitive challenges increase independence and ease of everyday activities, essentially helping them to interact and engage with their world better accounting for their condition or any difficulties that may be present. This could be through play, self-care, prescription of aides or equipment, engagement in learning or social skills and participation.
Physiotherapy: offers interventions for children to help diagnose and treat musculoskeletal, post surgical, neurological and developmental presentations as well as sensory impairments related to hearing and vision. Physiotherapy also helps children with biomechanical, positional and sports injuries. This is achieved through play, manual therapy, measurement for and fitting of equipment and aides, education and exercise prescription.
Exercise Physiology: use tailored exercise prescription to help people of all ages improve their health, quality of life and daily functioning. These interventions are evidence-based and include health and physical activity education, advice and support, and lifestyle modification with a strong focus on achieving behavioural change. Exercise Physiologists employ psychologically informed practices to help with goal setting, developing exercise routines, motivation and lifestyle change.
You can give our friendly team a call or book a consultation with one of our Exercise Physiologists to review your child’s NDIS plan to see if their allocated funding can be used for Exercise Physiology Services. Exercise Physiology services can draw from the following funding areas:
- Capacity Building Early Childhood Interventions Supports (under 7yrs)
- Capacity Building Improved Health and Wellbeing
- Capacity Building Improved Daily Living