How adventurous would you say your children are, compared to you when you were their age?
Are you parents of a child who is not constantly glued to an electronic device? (er…yes!). While parents seemingly enjoyed activities like playing board games and flying kites, kids today are generally much more adventurous – when they are away form said devices – in their choice of outdoor pursuits – if the findings of family tour operator Club Med‘s study (that polled 1,500 UK parents) are anything to go by.
Zorbing, white water rafting and knee boarding are some of the exciting new sports that kids seem to prefer over staying inside today.
Here are some fun facts found by the study:
- One in three London kids have taken up karate.
- British kids are more likely to have abseiled, skied and rock climbed by the time they turn 15.
- A third of Brits admit that their children are more active than they were at the same age.
- Today’s kids are likely to have ticked off canoeing (25%), go carting (25%), archery (24%) or mountain biking (20%) before they reach young adulthood.
Generation GO: Where to try new activities
Trying new activities and hobbies on holiday is great, but what if they want to continue when they get home? We’ve some tips below on getting them started now. As time outside is a vital part of kids’ development and you don’t have to be on holiday to enjoy it!
Days out, half term breaks, school exeat are all great opportunities to try some exciting activities. During the week, if your children are at home, make time for play and adventure with some fun ideas for everyday play. You don’t need to join a club to get outside. Get some inspiration for every day wild time from The Wild Network. Their Wild Time App for kids is safe & has activities for country estates, or city streets.
> READ MORE 10 ways to encourage children to get moving
- Mountain Biking
All they really need is a bike. Kids naturally seek the thrills, but if they want to push themselves the Olympic Velo Park (now Lee Valley Velo Park) has everything: mountain biking, BMX track and road bike route. There are fun trails in most of London’s parks, too. And the Olympic mountain biking course, in Essex in under an hour from London and boasts some ‘rad drops’. Apparently. In the Chilterns, Aston Hill Bike Park is another park under an hour from London and within easy reach of the west.
- Tree Climbing
If you’re in London, there are a plethora of parks and open spaces. You don’t have to visit Go Ape to climb trees. But if you do, the one in Battersa Park is superb. It is made all the more lovely being built up into the trees (Go Ape Battersea). National Trust properties of Morden Hall Park, or Ham House are both brilliant for explorers.
READ MORE >> Why do children love climbing trees?
The British Canoe Club is a great place to start for clubs, local activities (and not just canoeing. Paddle boarding is extremely popular). In London, there’s a dedicated site Canoe London, too. Two of the most popular are at Wimbledon (Wimbledon Park Watersports Centre) and again the Olympic legacy continues at the former Olympic course at Lee Valley, with white water rafting.
Archery GB is the official body and their website has lots of information. There’s JAWS for kids, which is a badge-based a scheme to encourage them to learn archery. From our own experience, they seem to really take to archery. Perhaps the latent hunter in all of us? Crystal Palace Junior Bowmen is one well known club, plus 2020 Archery and Experience Archery all offer courses.
Been watching ‘Kobra Kai’ on Netflix – the series following on from the original Karate Kid movie? This explains the renewed interest in this traditional Japanese martial arts. Visit Modern Martial Arts for information on classes near you and how to get started.
World of Golf is dedicated to growing the game of golf and truly believes this starts with introducing as many children as possible into the game. They offer lesson and kids camps. For younger children Putter Fingers offers crazy golf hire, crazy golf courses for home/garden use, equipment and accessories, putters, balls and golf gifts.