Healthy Abbotsford Blog

10 Tips to Help Your Kids Play More

This article is from ParticipACTION.

Physical activity makes us healthier, faster, stronger, more flexible, smarter and more. But when it comes to kids, it should be all about active play. The following tips are designed to help them enjoy as much active play as we once did.

  1. DAILY ROUTINES: Help your kids build physical activity into their daily routines with activities like walking or cycling to school with friends.
  2. IT’S IN THE BAG! Pack their backpacks with equipment that promotes active play at school recess and lunch breaks: a soccer ball, skipping rope, chalk, Frisbee, basketball, etc.
  3. AT LUNCH & AFTER SCHOOL: Encourage your kids to play active games with friends and to join school teams. Click here for our After School Tips & Recommendations.
  4. SWIMMING LESSONS: Register for swimming lessons and stick with them until your kids are competent swimmers. Swimming is a life skill and making a splash at the local community centre pool is a terrific way for kids to play.
  5. BE A MODEL: Be a role model for your child. Active parents tend to have more active children. Introduce your child to some of the activities you enjoy and participate in some of the active games and activities they enjoy too.
  6. END OF DAY PLAY: Don’t let your child sit in front of the TV or computer after school. Instead, register them for active programs, have them invite a friend over for active outdoor play, or better yet, get active with them.
  7. EVENING, WEEKEND & HOLIDAY FUN: Make evenings, weekends and holidays active. Plan your activities as a family, write them on the calendar, and anticipate the fun!
  8. LIMIT SCREEN TIME: Set rules and limit daily screen time or have your children earn it. For example, your child might earn 20 minutes of screen time for every hour they’re active.
  9. EDUCATE OTHERS ABOUT INACTIVITY: Make sure your child’s daycare and school knows that physical activity is a priority for you and draw their attention to Canada’s physical inactivity crisis. Ask them what they’ll be doing to address inactivity.
  10. TRACK IT: Buy your child a pedometer to wear and encourage them to strive for at least 10,000 steps a day. You might also equip your child’s bicycle with an odometer to help them track the distance they bike in a day, week, month, or throughout the year.

Watch our new Bring Back Play TV spot!


Kids in the Kitchen – Simple Snacks

Here is a great video from Together is Better BC - two simple snacks that you and your kids can make together.


Sudden Severe Headache = A Stroke?

This information is from the Heart & Stroke Foundation:

Stroke is a medical emergency. Recognizing and responding immediately to the signs of stroke by calling 9-1-1 or your local emergency number can significantly improve survival and recovery.

What are the five signs of stroke?

Stroke can be treated. That’s why it is so important to recognize and respond to the warning signs.

pictures of the 5 signs of a stroke

If you experience any of these symptoms, call 9-1-1 or your local emergency number immediately. If a person is diagnosed with a stroke caused by a blood clot, doctors can administer a clot-busting drug available only at a hospital, and only within a few crucial hours after symptoms begin.* That’s why it is very important to be able to recognize the 5 warning signs of stroke and immediately call 9-1-1 or your local emergency number.

For more information visit The Heart & Stroke Foundation.


5 Ways You Can Make Health Last

You may not know it, but you’re at risk of spending the last 10 years of your life battling illness and disability.

Two older adults kayaking  

Good health habits lead to a vitality-filled future.

Research shows that for many of us, there’s 10-year gap between how long we’ll live and how long we will be in good health. But we can close that gap and change our future. We can start now to ensure that last decade is spent doing the things we love to do – travelling, spending time with family, pursuing hobbies.

The Heart and Stroke Foundation has launched Make Health Last – a movement to motivate Canadians to make healthy changes now so that they can enjoy their later years with vitality.

The key is the risk factors that increase our odds of heart disease, stroke and other illnesses. Almost all of us have at least one risk factor. Some, such as our genetic heritage, can’t be changed. But other risk factors can be controlled through the choices we make every day.

Need convincing? Click here to take a look at how many healthy years these risk factors could cost you.


What Will Your Last 10 Years Look Like?

Here is a video from The Heart & Stroke Foundation. While it doesn’t go through how to actually live healthier, the message is a powerful one. While there are many things in our health that we cannot control, there are many that we can. And those that we can control, make a big difference in the quality of our lives.