Skip to content
My WebMD Sign In, Sign Up

Raising Fit Kids: Healthy Nurtition, Exercise, and Weight

  This content is selected and controlled by WebMD's editorial staff in collaboration with Sanford Health Systems.

Quiz: Is Your Kid Too Busy?

  1 of  
Current Score:  
Loading..Please Wait
slide image

Which could be a sign that your child is doing too much?

slide image

Which could be a sign that your child is doing too much?

  • Your Answer:
  • Correct Answer:

Your child may not tell you she feels overwhelmed with activities and school work. But headaches or stomachaches could be signs that she's feeling stressed. Is she not eating well? Is she moodier than usual? Not sleeping so well?   

 

Talk to her and ask her what's wrong. It may be time to cut back on some commitments. Sit down and plan things on a family calendar so you can see how much is going on. Decide together which activities are more important and then limit them to a couple of days a week. Make sure she has some time where she has nothing to do at all.  

slide image

How often do children need free time?

slide image

How often do children need free time?

  • Your Answer:
  • Correct Answer:

Children should have at least a little time every day when they can do anything -- or nothing. Encourage your child to read, listen to (or make) music, ride a bike, or take a walk -- whatever helps him recharge his batteries. No matter how old they are, kids need time to relax.

 

And TV, video games, and computer time don’t count as relaxation. Work with your child to limit his screen time to less than 2 hours a day. The more time they spend in front of screens, the less time they have to get up and be physically active to stay fit.

Are kids really busier than they were 30 years ago?

Are kids really busier than they were 30 years ago?

  • Your Answer:
  • Correct Answer:

It depends on the kid, but between homework and activities, kids have been having less and less free time since the early '80s.  If your child is already super busy, think twice before adding on another sport, music lesson, or after-school club.

 

In addition to recharging during the day, you should make sure your child has enough time to settle in for a good night’s sleep at night. Late-night homework sessions or extracurriculars can eat into restorative sleep.

 

School-aged kids need 10 to 11 hours of sleep a night. Teens need 8.25 to 9.25 hours a night. To help kids settle in, set a relaxing bedtime routine -- maybe a warm bath and reading before lights out.

If your kid is hyper and getting in trouble, it could be a sign he’s overscheduled.

If your kid is hyper and getting in trouble, it could be a sign he’s overscheduled.

  • Your Answer:
  • Correct Answer:

If your laid-back kid is suddenly hyper or your well-behaved child now causes trouble, it could be stress. A change in behavior can mean there's too much going on and your kid is having trouble handling it.

 

Help him feel better by taking walks, listening to music, or doing yoga.

 

Stress can raise your and your kid's risk of heart problems, diabetes, and obesity.

Which activity helps children's grades the most?

Which activity helps children's grades the most?

  • Your Answer:
  • Correct Answer:

Playing sports or a musical instrument can help a child get better grades. But the simple act of eating dinner together at home seemed to better predict whether kids would have higher scores in school, according to one study. Kids with less dinner time were more likely to have behavior problems, too.

 

Plus, others studies have shown that kids who have more family dinners are less likely to be obese than those who don’t have a dedicated family meal.  

 

So while it may be tempting to pile on the extracurriculars to help your kid get ahead, the answer is to slow down! Schedule family dinners whenever you have a night without practices or meetings. Are evenings too hectic for dinner? Try working in family quality time by eating breakfast together.

This can help cut stress:

This can help cut stress:

  • Your Answer:
  • Correct Answer:

Kids thrive on structure. While it may seem rigid, setting some family rules will help them and you feel less frazzled.

 

One idea is to limit each child's activities to two afternoons or evenings a week.

 

Keep a family calendar of everyone's commitments. There should be some days without any commitments. Let everyone have some free time. Having time to recharge and relax is part of living a healthy life.

Four years old is too early for most children to join an organized sports team.

Four years old is too early for most children to join an organized sports team.

  • Your Answer:
  • Correct Answer:

All team sports don’t have to be competitive teams. Signing your 4-year-old up for a T-ball team may be OK if the goal is to have fun and play with other kids.

 

Playing sports teaches them teamwork. Also, when kids play sports early, they grow up with activity as a normal part of everyday life.

 

But if the team stresses competition, look for another team. At this age, it should be about pure fun and teamwork -- not winning.

Quitting an activity or sport mid-season is a bad idea.

Quitting an activity or sport mid-season is a bad idea.

  • Your Answer:
  • Correct Answer:

Many parents believe that once you start something, you should stick with it -- no matter what. But there are always exceptions. Forcing kids to "stick with it" doesn’t always teach perseverance or commitment. It may set them up for a lifetime of overcommitting.

 

Learning how to balance activities and school is an important life skill, too. Talk to your child about why she wants to quit an activity. If her grades or well-being are at stake, consider letting her drop out.

 

Next time, help make sure she knows what she's getting into before she signs up. Talk about how much time it will take and plan together for how it will fit into her schedule. Weighing the decision together and talking it out will teach her these type of skills for life.

 

If she knows what to expect before she starts, it also may make her more likely to stick with it.

Your Score:     You correctly answered   out of   questions.
Your Score:     You correctly answered   out of   questions.
results image

Great! You know how to keep busy kids healthy.

Good job. You know that part of being a fit family is giving kids time to recharge, too.

Looks like you learned some things about helping your family find a better balance.

 

For Kids and Parents. Kid Tested. Expert Approved.

Kids Healthy Weight & BMI Calculator

Enter your child's information:
Gender
 
 
ft
in
mo
yr
lbs
Get Started