Endurance Exercises for Children

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Many healthy habits develop early in life, and physical activity and endurance is no exception. Endurance develops as children exercise and increase the amount of activity their bodies can produce, resulting in stronger muscles, less body fat and a reduced chance of developing diabetes or high blood pressure. According to Kids Health, children should get at least 60 minutes of moderate exercise most, if not all, days of the week. This physical activity should be a combination of planned and unplanned activities. Fortunately, games and regular playground activities are a source of exercise for many children.

Aerobic Exercises

Regular aerobic exercises increase heart rate and endurance, in addition to strengthening lungs. According to a 1995 study referenced in Pediatrics Journal, regular exercise once a week for 12 weeks increased the maximal oxygen uptake in school-aged children. Children often get aerobic exercise when playing games such as tag or jump rope. Other examples of aerobics include basketball, bike riding, jogging, roller skating, ice skating, dancing and soccer. Walking or riding a bike to and from school is also a good way to get aerobic exercise and build endurance.

Strength Exercises

Children can develop increased endurance by participating in strength exercises. Although many adult strength exercises include weight lifting and crunches, children can experience results from everyday games at home or on the school playground. Going across the monkey bars, climbing play structures or trees and playfully wrestling with friends or siblings works muscles in the arms, legs and abdomen.


Swimming is an effective way to build endurance, according to Kids Exercise. Swim classes or simply playing games in a swimming pool offer an aerobic and strength building activity that requires less exertion than activities on dry land. This is due to the buoyancy in water supporting the body’s movements, which makes swimming an especially good workout for children with conditions that make other exercises more difficult such as juvenile arthritis, obesity or asthma.