I thought it was high time I exercised some of my mum of a tween and teenager (a nearly teen if you aren’t familiar with that term) skills. I’m going to avoid claiming that certain activities are only suitable for boys as there seems less and less of a divide between the genders these days.
As any parent or carer of this age group will know, as winter sets in it gets harder and harder to get them off their gadgets and out in the fresh air. It is so much easier to let them be when they’re quiet and safe, but parenting doesn’t stop at 11. The same rules apply whether they’re 4 or 14, they need exercise, good food, protection, excitement and most importantly; fresh air. See I said it again!
With school pressures, peer pressures and a natural urge to push boundaries, it can be tough for our emerging adults and teenage depression and low mood can be a problem. One of the ways to help is to get out in the daylight hours and do some exercise. (read more on helping depression in teenagers here.)
We have a rule, if they want computer or games console time, they have to get out and about. It’s a whole different kettle of fish where you encourage them to go mind. Gone are the days of getting away with a walk to the local park to play on swings or puddle jumping sessions.
For your teenager or tween to willingly get out without a power struggle, it has to be something either fun, cool or simply what all the other teenagers in the neighbour hood are doing. (That’s where the safe thing come in, if they’re enticed into anti social behaviour then you really have got to up your game of activites to lure them away!)
I’m very lucky, both my older 2 are skateboard mad. It’s very much the thing to do in my area and I suspect in your too. I love that they have such an active hobby which has taught them balance and control and they can participate with friends or on their own. It also made Christmas shopping rediculously easy, I just plonked my self infront of the laptop and browsed websites like Skatehut.co.uk and stocked up on grip tape, bearings, wheels and skate tools.
They got their boards as birthday or Christmas presents and half the fun as a skateboarder is customising and upgrading them, it sounds like an expensive hobby but it really isn’t. And anything they want or need which their allowance can’t stretch to, they save for using their Osper cards. (That’s a whole different blog post but works a treat)
Local councils are really catching on to the skateboard craze and most towns now have a dedicated skatepark for skaters and scooter enthusiasts alike. While some unfortunately do end up as gathering spots for the not so nice activities, there are many which are used for the purpose for which they were created and my boys soon sought out the best ones to practice their tricks.
So next time your teenager tells you they’re bored, there’s nothing to do and can they go on their Playstation, get them skating, start on a quite road as there will be a few little bumps. Before they know it, they’ll be showcasing their skills to friends and it’s a great way of getting down to the school bus in record time when they can’t get out of the bed in the morning.
Just ask my neighbours!
This is a collaborative post