Vigorous exercise, such as running, helps children with behavior problems.

Exercise Groups for Children With Behavior Problems

by MollyAnne Cerreta Smith

Children with behavioral problems, such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, which affects an estimated 8 to 10 percent of school-aged children, often have difficulty focusing and sitting still. However, by adding an exercise group to your child's treatment plan, you can see improvement in your child's behavior.

1. Sports and Physical Activity

According to KidsHealth, children's behavior often improves once their self-esteem does, since children need to feel success to feel good about themselves. Helping your child discover a natural talent or interest, such as a sport, can lead to improved self-esteem and social skills, which can, in turn, lead to better behavior. For children with big tempers, physical activity like as karate or wrestling can help burn off energy and stress in a positive way.

2. Non-Competitive Classes

A child with behavioral problems like hyperactivity can benefit from non-competitive group or individual exercise classes, such as swimming or aerobics, according to ADHD Parent Support. Since children with hyperactivity have trouble sitting still, swimming classes or aerobics groups keep them actively moving and tire them out in the process.

3. Vigorous Exercise

According to Ask Dr. Sears, behavioral problems in children can often be attributed to nutrition deficiency and can be improved through proper nutrition and exercise. In addition to eating healthfully, the site suggests children should do vigorous exercise to improve blood flow in the body, since this increases nutrients in the body. Consider a fast-paced exercise group for your child, such as track and field or a high-energy cardiovascular activity like dance.

4. Wilderness Groups and Outside Activity

Children with behavioral problems can find both solace and stimulation through communing with nature. According to ADHD Parent Support, the adventure of hiking or talking a nature walk keeps children moving, which helps hyperactive children burn off that excess energy while also providing the beautiful visual distractions of nature, such as animals, plants and flowers. KidsHealth also notes that outside activity like talking a walk around the neighborhood or digging in the garden can help children with anger issues or mood swings to shift into a better mood.

About the Author

MollyAnne Cerreta Smith has more than 15 years of experience as an editor and writer in print and online media. She regularly contributes to online publication SheKnows.com, where she shares her parenting (and other!) insights with thousands of readers and writes for other local print and online publications as well.

Photo Credits

  • Stockbyte/Stockbyte/Getty Images