A child this age keeps you busier than ever. He can hold a thought and he enjoys solving problems -- like how to get on top of that counter or out the front door faster than you! He is physically strong, has a good memory, and is a constant surprise. Climbing and running are his choice activities. Even a parent in good physical condition will be awed by his seemingly inexhaustible energy level. In this section, you'll learn about developing your toddler's physical skills by adding the suggested exercises for the third year.
Exercise refines your child's skills and helps him learn to master his body. During play, encourage and foster cardiovascular (aerobic) exercises for his heart and lungs with activities such as running, chasing, and kicking balls to a partner. Try for 12 minutes of nonstop action to develop his stamina and endurance (aerobic fitness).
Add some new equipment to your exercise routine to increase interest and variety. But remember: Mastering new tricks is a challenge; repeating old ones is reassuring. Children love new experiences as well as repetition.
At this age, children sometimes develop fears. Don't force a new experience. Hug and hold your child. Reassure him to help him feel safe. Fear will pass.
Choose a time when your child is naturally active for your exercise time. Although no special clothing is needed, children love to dress up for the occasion. A warm-up suit or leotard may increase the fun.
Don't forget music! When possible, let your child decide what music to use, and offer him a wide variety of musical choices.
If you wish, you can use your favorite exercises from the previous section in addition to those that follow.
Suggested Exercises: 23 to 36 Months
- Hug Yourself
- Improves flexibility in arms, upper back, and shoulders
- Improves coordination
For more common questions and expert answers on fitness and exercise, visit Sharecare.com.