Active play includes any activity that involves moderate to vigorous bursts of high energy. Put simply, if it raises their heart rate and makes them "huff and puff", it’s active play.
For babies, active play is obviously less intense. It includes activities such as reaching out to touch something, rolling over or balancing in a sitting position.
Babies and children should enjoy active play every single day. It's this kind of routine that will help your kids form lifelong habits of daily physical activity.
The different ways to active play
Active play can be done in lots of ways. It can be structured or unstructured. It can happen indoors or outdoors. Children can play alone or with others.
Structured play has rules, time limits and equipment and includes organised sport, like swimming lessons and kinder gym.
Unstructured play is more spontaneous and can be as simple walking with the kids to the park or encouraging them to use their imaginations while playing.
Indoor play may have some space limitations, but there are still plenty of opportunities for active play. When you make clever use of the space you have, and think creatively about indoor active play, your kids won’t just be moving – they can be moving in ways that won’t happen as often during outdoors play.
Outdoor play gives them all the room they need for ‘gross motor’ activities like jumping, running, climbing and leaping at different speeds. Being outdoors is also a great opportunity for kids to get to know their environment and connect with nature.
Out and About play. When outdoors, you and your kids should be sun smart. Wear long-sleeved polo shirts, knee length shorts and wide-brimmed hats. And remember to regularly apply at least a SPF30+ broad-spectrum sunscreen.