Physical literacy program gives kids confidence to try new activities

Physical literacy program gives kids confidence to try new activities

Our bodies are designed to move. I learned this at a young age and this concept was reinforced again and again in my university education where I studied kinesiology and health promotion. I’ve also seen it firsthand as a mom of two kids. My 6- and 8-year-olds show me every day how much they like to move. We live in the mountains near the ocean and I am fortunate that my kids have opportunities to hike, bike, ski, and play in the forests and at the beach.

KidsMove, Fortius Sport & Health

Location: Burnaby, BC
Price: free

Yet, despite our access to the outdoors, kids have a propensity towards being sedentary.

As a parent, it has been fascinating to watch my children develop movement skills. While my daughter has been exposed to various sports and both structured and unstructured activities, participating in sports has not been her passion. However, this summer she had fun participating in a KidsMove program where she further refined her movement skills and learned about topics such as nutrition, teamwork, visualization, and rest and recovery in a supportive environment.

KidsMove is one of the programs for 9- to 12-year-olds of all abilities created by the REACH collaboration. Children develop physical literacy and learn life skills aimed at improving their personal well-being. These are key ages for developing correct movement patterns and skills (e.g., agility, balance, coordination and speed), which will contribute to success in sport, injury prevention, and enjoying being active for a lifetime. It was a positive, learning experience for my daughter, which I think has empowered her to be more active.

Children in the program can expect to learn about movement, psychology, fitness and lifestyle (recovery, nutrition, sleep) from experienced coaches. The children have fun practicing the concepts they learn through games, drills, stations, and education sessions. KidsMove was designed by health and sport science experts and it shows through their integrated approach. My husband is an exercise physiologist (sport scientist) and one of the program developers. The program engages kids to be physically active.

This year at school my daughter has had the confidence to try new sports and is enjoying being active with friends. It’s wonderful to see her smile when she finishes a cross-country run or steps off the soccer field. She joined the Ultimate frisbee team at school and a community swim club. She is learning that even though it can be difficult at times or challenging to try something new, physical activity makes her feel great. I hope that not only my children, but all children develop a love of moving their bodies for the rest of their lives.

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