Why You Should Teach Your Child to Run, Part 3

Why You Should Teach Your Child to RunThere are six excellent reasons why you should teach your child to run.

In case you missed parts one and two, be sure to read the previous running posts in our blog.

We will discuss each of these in our blog.

Reason Four—Health

Our children have far fewer upper respiratory infections than average tiny children. Pediatricians become concerned only if children have more than nine upper respiratory infections a year! Sometimes our children go an entire year with no respiratory infections.  Overall, their ability to combat illnesses and recover more rapidly is far above average.

Because young runners are athletes, we are careful to feed them healthy foods and provide them with vitamin supplements.

Reason Five—Running is the foundation for other physical activities and sports

Sports can be divided into two groups. Endurance activities, such as football, basketball, and swimming, require the ability to keep moving continuously.  A well-developed respiratory system and body musculature are necessary to meet the physical challenge of endurance activities.

Distance running creates the necessary respiratory and muscle function for these sports, so we teach our children to run nonstop distances comfortably and happily.

The second group of sports includes speed activities. Gymnastics, tennis, baseball, and skating (as well as football, basketball, and swimming) require the ability to sprint. Sprinting is running at top speed for brief distances.  After they have learned to run distances nonstop, we teach our children how to sprint with ease.

As a result of their running program, our children can pursue any physical activity they choose. Children in our Early Development Program and our International School engage in all the above activities, as well as biking, skiing, hiking, martial arts, dancing, and ballet.  Whatever physical activity you name, there is probably at least one child is doing it.

Running is the foundation of all sports.  The beauty of running is that it costs far less to do than any of the above activities.  The only equipment needed for running is a pair of feet, and everyone has one. We encourage our children to run in bare feet and, when necessary, in good-quality running shoes.

Reason Six—Running helps to create close families

We have saved the best for last.  In 1977 The Institutes began to teach parents how to teach their children to run.  Today, thousands of children later, we have seen the social benefits of running.  Parents who succeed in teaching their children how to run can do any physical activity that they and their children choose to do, and they can do it together.

Fifteen years ago, as a young parent, I began this running program with our first son.  Long ago he became a far better runner than I.  Today he runs with me, as opposed to the other way around.  We can go out to the park together, or as my family travels around the world with The Institutes we have the opportunity to run in some of the great cities on our planet.

When we run, my children and I can be together without any interruptions.  We talk about whatever we like.  They have a chance to tell me about their world and I have a chance to tell them about mine.  Sometimes we enjoy the beauty of the park, and sometimes we enjoy the sights of the city or the challenge of finding our way around.  It’s my special time to be with my children.

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