Did you know that an adult human head ways about 10 pounds?
No wonder our necks and backs get sore! That's a lot of weight to carry on our thin necks!
Now think about children writing at their desks all day. No wonder you see so many of them with their heads down or slouched. Did you ever say to a child "sit up straight?" I know I have. But I never thought about how tired their backs and necks might be.
Some exercises to strengthen those back and neck muscles:
- Wall Push-ups - similar to regular push-ups but do it standing leaning against a wall. Most young kids don't have the strength for regular push-ups, and it is important not to practice poor technique or form.
- Plank- Have your students hold their bodies in "push-up" position on the floor and hold it for ten seconds. Make sure their ears stay over their shoulders and their heads don't drop down. Their backs should be nice and straight.
- Rows- Sing the "row, row, row your boat" song while sitting on the floor or in chairs. Row your arms in circles with a nice straight back. Go forward, go backward, do alternating arms.
Try a new way of sitting:
- Wall Squats - have the children lean against the wall and slowly slide down until their legs are at 90 degree angles. See how long they can hold themselves in this position. What a leg workout! Those legs need some activation so they don't get to sleepy sitting!
- Back to Back Standing - Have two children sit back to back on the floor. Ask them to press their backs together and stand. They really have to engage those leg and stomach muscles.
Have fun strengthening the muscles that support your neck with the children in your life!