It’s incredible to watch how little (zero) encouragement most young kids need to move. To watch what they can do or what they’re trying and failing to do. And how little they need to get excited about it all.
I’ve got a two spare double mattresses in my home office. In the past I would’ve donated them to a charity. But now, I am holding on to them. With teeth. Because our kids use them to bounce off the walls.
Tackling them, climbing them (when one’s upright), bouncing around, running circles, rolling, jumping off them, wrestling, somersaults… And it’s not like I am asking them to do it. They’re demanding to enter the padded room.
Usually accompanied by music. Music that, for a standard adult, is the equivalent of a rusty spoon stirring the brain through the ear canal (“Put on Paw Patrol song!”). On repeat.
This circus can go on for an hour. With tight three second hydration pit stops in the middle. It’s incredible to watch. The energy of it all.
But the best part of it is that there’s no end goal to any of this. The point is to just move in any way humanly possible.
Then, at some age, this interest in movement grinds to a halt. Some of it is just biology. We get older. Some of it is environmental. Most of us swap movement for sitting. I think school has a lot to do with this. “Sit still!” “Don’t move!” But I’ll save that rant for another post.
Yet, it’s not too late for us adults to redeem ourselves. We can learn a thing or two from how kids approach movement.
When’s the last time you physically tried something that you haven’t done before, or recently?
For no other reason than to just do it.
Now, I am not saying you need to put on Friends’ theme song on repeat and bounce in your garden or balcony for an hour. (Although, why not?)
For some of us, it might be just as simple as learning to touch toes or sitting in a deep squat. Others might want to try backflips into the pool. Most of us can re-start somewhere in the middle.
When it comes to movement, young kids can teach us a lot. Regardless of our age.