Do you find it difficult to keep your children hydrated during the day? You’re not alone! Hydration is a topic that most parents struggle with because our children prefer to drink juices and soft drinks. We have a list below that is sure to help with educating and persuading your children to drink more water, especially before their martial arts classes!
Education - One of the first steps to helping your children to stay hydrated is to educate them about the importance of water to our health. Tell your children that water is needed by every part of their bodies to help them maintain their energy, regulate body temperature, absorption of nutrients, cushion joints, remove waste, carry nutrients and oxygen to cells, and moisten oxygen for better breathing. In addition to helping with all of these bodily needs, water also makes up large percentages of our body parts. Explain to your children that their brains are composed of 75% water, their blood is 83% water, 22% of all of their bones are made of water and their muscles are made of 75% water! Help your children understand that if they are working hard each day in their martial arts classes and they are striving to achieve incredible goals, water is crucial to prepare their minds and bodies for the journey!
Water Bottles - Now that your children are educated as to why everyone is telling them to hydrate, make it easy for them to maintain this hydration! Go with your children to pick out a reusable water bottle. This water bottle will be theirs and they can take it with them to school, martial arts classes, have it handy at home, etc. This gives them a new fun water bottle that they specifically chose and is also a great way to constantly remind your children to take a sip!
Get Creative - Add cut up fruit to water for extra flavor, use ice cubes that are in fun shapes (Amazon has tons of ice cube molds to choose from), and use fun straws! Kids are all about having fun, so why not incorporate that into their hydration quest!
Make it Easy - Keep water bottles and a pitcher of water at a height that the kids can reach! If they can’t reach the sink, counter, or pitcher in the refrigerator then the kids can’t refill their waters! Kids don’t want to interrupt their fun times to drink water. If the kids are outside or playing with friends inside, keep their water bottles near by and come over every 20 minutes or so to have them pause and drink some water.
Set Goals - Set goals with the kids to help them drink water. Have a chart on the fridge or in the playroom or somewhere that is visible. Mark down how many refills each child and parent in the family has each day and set daily and weekly goals. Come up with some sort of reward once the goals are met!
Set an Example - If there is soda and juice in the house then those drinks become options and it will be more difficult to sway your children to drink water. Additionally, if you are drinking soda and other sugary beverages in front of the kids, the example will be set that water isn’t the most important beverage for hydration. If you are used to drinking sugary drinks, set a goal with the kids and the entire family can become involved on the quest to drink more water and less juices and soft drinks.
Making a lifestyle change isn’t always easy, but with the support of the entire family and these quick tips on how to incorporate hydration into your busy lives, you’ll be well on your way!