It’s what’s on the inside that counts.
“What mental health needs is more sunlight”Glenn Close
The subject of mental health deserves more attention than it currently is receiving, and for good reason; mental health is an important component of our overall well-being. When our mind is happy and healthy, we feel happy and healthy. As parents of children growing up in the 21st Century, we’d want this for them.
The 21st Century abounds with digital devices, and our little ones are no stranger to them. However, as great as our screens are, children and teenagers who spend more than 7 hours a day on screens are twice as likely to be diagnosed with anxiety or depression. They may find it difficult to focus and complete tasks, forge friendships, and may even experience a lower curiousity than their peers. Naturally, this would be a growing area of concern for parents like ourselves who are raising digitally-wired children.
Of course, the next best course of action is to reduce the amount of time our children spend staring at the screen. One of the best ways we can do that is to bring our children outdoors!
Suns on our backs, blue skies above our tracks.
Being in the 21st century, the greatest highlight of our children’s day is getting their hands on the latest iPhone or unlocking a new level on their game. They’ve forgotten the pure joy of scooting outdoors, rolling in the leaves, and running till their feet drop.
Going outdoors is not only a great way to reduce the amount of time your child spends on the screens, but it has also been proven to alleviate mental stress. Outdoor physical activity has been shown to lower anxiety levels and significantly improve the emotional and physical health of children. In fact, being outdoors amongst the greenery helps to combat anxiety, depression, and other mental health stresses.
Close probably didn’t realise the weight of her words when she said mental health needs more sunlight, huh?
The gift of play.
Going out to play is one of the best joys of childhood. Add some friends into the mix and you’re guaranteed to have a ball of a time. Remember when we would play with our friends at the park? Laughter would fill the air and our silly imaginations would wash our worries away. Throwing in a toy would definitely amp up the fun! White and Black Trading’s All Surface Swingball is a great two player game for your child and his/her friends to play with!
As the name suggests, it’s a ball that swings! To be exact, it sits at the end of a tether string and two players have to hit it back and forth as it swings – a little like tennis. The tether will move up and down, and the player who manages to move the tether up to the top, wins! A game of great fun, the All Surface Swingball can serve as an immense stress reliever – hitting the ball back and forth will help them release any built-up stress. Also, you never know – a game of swingball could lead to something bigger. After all, world-renowned tennis player, Andy Murray, started his tennis career by playing swingball!
The best thing for us parents? It can be easily stored in a carrier box, and you can conveniently set it up in any outdoor location. So, you can definitely bring this outdoors to your nearby park, put it up, and it’s game on! Once the game’s finished, you can easily collapse it and store it back in the same carrier box. You can get yourself the All Surface Swingball from the plano Shop* today!
Putting the ‘great’ in the great outdoors.
Bringing your child outdoors for some good ol’ fashioned fun is always a good idea. It’s a splendid way for your child to run around and spend some time away from the screen. But more importantly, it helps relieve them of their stress and anxiety that stem from school or their smartphones.
As parents ourselves, if there’s one thing we will do, it’s protecting our kids’ mental and physical health. And if bringing them outdoors is going to help them, even just a little bit, then let’s all get out and do it today.
*only available to Singapore plano users.