In Dubai & Abu Dhabi issues related to children’s weight continue to rise.
There are so many factors associated with childhood obesity. We asked a professional personal trainer in Dubai who has experience working with children of all ages for his thoughts and tips on children’s weight management.
How can a specialised personal trainer in the UAE help with kids weight management?
Question: Like many other countries, the UAE does have a problem with childhood obesity which causes concern for many parents. While many parents know the importance of exercise and healthy eating most are confused when it comes to the best methods to help with diet, exercise and ultimately weight loss. Can you summarise why you think a specialist children’s fitness personal trainer in Dubai can help?
It’s hard for any child to be put on a diet as their taste buds haven’t develop and they are a lot more picker when it comes to food than adults.
You also have the problem of fast food these days and the advertisement that is brain washed into them, so when they are hungry the first thing their mind will think about is McDonalds.Another problem we have these days in Dubai is the sugar that is put in nearly everything, this then make the taste appealing for kids and it becomes pretty addictive as well as most kids will have a sweet tooth.
A children’s fitness PT can only advise the parents on macro nutrients and give them options as to what foods the child can eat.
As children are still in a developing stage they shouldn’t be working out with weights or if they are they should be very light weights.A PT can help by creating a program which will keep children engaged in the workout by making it fun but still managing to target the weight loss goal. In your professional opinion, how many hours per week should children in Dubai be exercising or taking part in sports outside of school hours.
My personal opinion on this would be 1 hour each day after school. The problem we have these days are kids are so involved with technology they don’t go outside and play like we use to, this is having the knock-on effect of causing the world to have an obesity problem.
Each day the majority of children in the UAE will come home from school and either watch TV, watch something on the internet, play a computer game or just be on social media.
Exercise & boredom
Question: Most children get bored fairly quickly. How does a children’s fitness personal trainer in Dubai help to keep children motivated and focused during 1-2-1 or group training sessions?
Personally, when I train children I try to make a game or challenge out of each and every exercise. For an example, jumping squats I would tell the child let pretend we are a pair of frogs and see how far we can jump, I would be engaging and join in with the child, so they also fill like someone is playing with them rather than just giving them instructions.
Find out what if the child likes any sports and then use that as an advantage by setting up similar training exercises they would do in that sport, again making if fun for the child keeping him engage rather than losing focus.
Lifestyle eating changes
Question: For many over-weight children healthy eating and dieting to lose weight should be seen as a starting point and not an end goal. How can a personal trainer help with longer term ‘weight management’ to ensure parents and children are educated about lifestyle changes.
Some PT’s are not qualified for nutrition plans but they can explain about the eat well plate and the quantity of food they should having and be giving themselves and the children.
Advising parents of kids in the UAE that if they change their own diet this will also help with the child’s as it means cooking the same meal for everyone and not one healthy meal for the child and another meal for yourselves.
If you educate the parents first then hopefully this knowledge will pass down to the children and everyone can have a healthy diet.