Learning to ride a bike

Child learning to ride bike.

Riding a bike is a fundamental skill that is recognised the world over with providing children with a sense of achievement and independence. So what are you waiting for?!

Being water safe

Kids learning surf life saving skills with teacher at beach.

As Kiwis, we love the water – playing or swimming in it, boating or sailing on it, or simply enjoying our stunning coastline, beaches, lakes and rivers. But sadly, every year, a large number of New Zealanders lose their lives to drowning. So how do we keep our children safe in and around water?

Team sport – using a bat

Kids playing cricket.

Much and all as you might dream of having a future sports star in the family, don’t be in too much of a hurry to sign them up for a team, say the experts.

Team sport – using a ball

Children gather together as a team with coach.

When your child takes up a new sport, it’s the beginning of new relationships for them and for you if you decide to get involved.

Moving to music

Children performing in Kapa Haka.

Turn up the music and get moving!

Locomotion and crossing midlines

Children playing outside in playground.

Locomotion – moving your body from one place to another – is one of the three fundamental themes that underpins all physical movement. Once they’ve mastered crawling and walking, children will naturally start to run, skip and hop.

Stability and manipulative skills

Boy throwing ball leaning fundamental physical movement

Alongside locomotion, stability (balance) and manipulative skills make up the three fundamental themes that underpin all physical movement.

The importance of being active

Mum playing cricket with daughter.

Regular physical activity is essential for brain development. The more a child moves, the more they stimulate their brain. Children are born wanting to move, to explore their world and to make sense of it. And it’s up to us to make sure they have plenty of opportunity to be active.

Getting ready for school

Children sit engaged with teacher in classroom.

It’s important for children to spend as much time as possible during their first five years (and beyond) moving and playing. The more opportunities children have to develop their physical and associated social, cognitive and emotional skills through physical activity, the more enjoyable and successful school is going to be.