The holidays are upon us and that means colder weather and children out of school. For every excited kid, there’s an equally unexcited parent — not that we don’t love our kids, but it’s hard to keep them entertained indoors throughout the entire winter. So what’s a quick fix before cabin fever sets in? Don’t keep them indoors — let them play outside in the cold weather!Before we dive into reasons why it’s beneficial for your kids to play outside in the cold winter weather, let’s tackle one common myth head-on: you can’t get sick from being outside in the cold. Germs make you sick, not cold weather, so as long as you’re dressed accordingly, you should be good to go!
Here are 3 reasons to let your kids play outside in the winter weather:
- It strengthens their immune system. Being exposed to germs, bacteria and allergens in a natural way (playing outside) helps to build up your immune system and makes you more resistant to sickness and allergies.
- It boosts their mood. The sun is an important source of Vitamin D, and Vitamin D increases the level of serotonin (a mood-regulating hormone) production in the brain, boosting your mood. Just 15 to 30 minutes of exposure to the sun can reduce feelings of depression, stress and anxiety.
- It’s a healthy habit. Being active and creating healthy habits is an important thing to instill in children. Having a healthy and active foundation sets them up to be healthy and active adults. Going outside to play in the winter sets a “no-excuses” mindset — a little cold weather shouldn’t stop you from getting in some fresh air and exercise!
As adults we often look at outdoor and playground play as unimportant - just child play - when in fact its a key player in children's health and development. Check out our blog on 11 Benefits of Recess in Elementary Schools to see how playground play extends across academic, social and intellectual boundaries.
This winter, don’t get cabin fever keeping your family confined to your house. Get your kids outside and banish those winter blues. It will save your sanity and create an overall healthier lifestyle for your family. Just remember to dress weather-appropriate and maybe bring some tissues!