Ministry of Health Singapore. All Rights Reserved.
Trying out new activities is a great way to get kids to adopt and embrace an active lifestyle.
There’s just no escaping the heat and humidity on this sunny isle but there is plenty we can still do at different times of the day — instead of staying indoors in front of the goggle box.
Photograph courtesy of Ultimate Players Association (Singapore).
Parents with kids with oodles of energy should introduce them to Ultimate Frisbee. This sport is a fast-paced, challenging and fun activity for kids and adults alike.
All you’ll need is some basic knowledge on how to catch and throw the frisbee, two teams of players, an empty field and you’re set to go. Similar to sports like soccer, hockey or basketball, it requires one to be nimble to make quick passes to fellow players and the stamina to move up and down the field.
Ultimate Frisbee is more than just a physical sport that trains your muscles, stamina and put your agility to the test. It is a great sport for kids to learn about teamwork as players need to work in unison throughout the game. Contrary to popular belief that it can be a rough game, this non-contact sport is safe and can be played by both gender at the same time.
“Ultimate Frisbee is a fun sport that teaches a combination of different skills. Learning how to do sidearm throws will help kids to translate the movement to other sport as such badminton strokes. Hand-eye coordination is also a key motor growth development for young children, which is constantly used when catching a disc and this can be easily translated to other sports that has a catching element,” said Joanne Soh, Vice-President, Ultimate Players Association (Singapore).
If your kid is between 8 to 12 years old, you can register them for the Ultimate Frisbee session which takes place on Sunday, 12 June 2016 at the Home of Athletics Track. Participants will learn the basics of the game including how to throw and catch the frisbee and have a go playing the sport. Do make use of the ActiveSG entitlement to receive a 30% discount off the registration fees.
For details, visit the ActiveSG Ultimate Frisbee (Children) webpage.
Photograph courtesy of
Mr Ting Kum Luen, Pacer Water Polo Academy.
Put simply, flippa ball is a modified junior version of water polo that’s ideal for kids to learn the basics of the sport. It’s a good introduction to the sport before progressing into competitive water polo. The sport is exciting, fun and easy to pick up for beginners.
“The rules of flippa ball are similar to that of Captain’s ball, the only difference is that this sport is played in the water. The game helps kids to build water confidence, hone ball skills and train them to learn how to work together in a team in a fun and safe environment. The sport drives home the value of teamwork — with the common goal of putting the ball into the goal post,” said Ting Kum Luen, coach and owner of Pacer Water Polo Academy.
Players don’t need to have exceptional swimming abilities. In fact, they don’t even need to know how to swim though knowing how to swim is a bonus. The aquatic activity is played in a wading pool of about 0.8 metres to 1.2 metres depth and can be played by girls and boys, and adults as well.
Look out for the Flippa Ball camps organised during school holidays for kids aged between 7 and 12 years old. You can use your ActiveSG entitlement to get a 30% discount off the registration fees. For updates, check out the ActiveSG Programme webpage.
Photograph courtesy of Bollywood Veggies.
Consider giving your city kids a dose of fresh country air with an excursion to the farms in Lim Chu Kang, otherwise known as Kranji Countryside. Many of the farms are sheltered but the coolest times are early mornings or late afternoons. Your kids can attempt to scoop a frog using a net and a bucket at the Jurong Frog Farm, or throw fish feed into the pond of fishes at Haussman Aquarium. If you visit Hay Dairies goat farm before 1030am, you’ll even catch them milking the goats. A must-visit is Bollywood Veggies, a nature sanctuary where kids can learn about different types of herbs, tropical plants and fruit trees and take part in a myriad of activities from painting, potting to running around the farm in a treasure hunt.
“Kids should be brought up as warriors, learning to play in nature and protect all life. My farm shows them that they should look to the earth for their adventures in life, and it will give back more,” said Mrs Ivy Singh-Lim, Owner and Founder of Bollywood Veggies. You can also sample local and fusion cuisine prepared using fresh produce from the farm and visit the museum which tells the evolution of food through colourful oil paintings.
The Kranji Countryside also boast a quarterly Farmers’ Market where you can cart home fresh local fruits, vegetables, eggs, organic produce and artisan-made sauces and jams. Kids can have fun learning about nature at the activity kiosks there too.
To check for farm opening hours and admission fees, visit Kranji Countryside
If your kids are competent on wheels, a cycling expedition around Pulau Ubin is a great way to spend the day. When you reach Ubin, stop by the Visitors’ Centre next to the jetty to get a map of the island to get oriented to the cycling trails. Nearby are bicycle rental shops offering a wide selection of mountain bikes, tandem bikes, tricycles and even bikes with side carts.
“The main service road, the tarmac road is relatively easy, has less traffic and is ideal for kids above six to seven years old. For kids who are into mountain biking, they can head for the mountain bike trail and enjoy a more rugged and adventurous experience,” said Kenneth Wee, Founder of the Singapore Bike School.
From the main village, head west on the tarmac road to visit the old Ubin Quarry; if you go to the east instead, you’ll reach the entry to the Chek Jawa Wetlands. Check out the many wooden houses along the way, and stop at the little rest stops for cold drinks or fresh coconuts. The trails are a great way for the young ones to work their leg muscles and put their endurance to the test when trying to conquer the steep slopes. Expect some slopes where it would be easier to dismount and push. Wild boars and monkeys are a common sight — if you do see them, keep a distance, do not feed them and make sure all food are in your bag. Go prepared with plenty of drinking water, mosquito repellent, sunscreen, cap and a poncho, in case it rains.
Another great option is to cycle along the main spine of the 40-hectare Coney Island Park on the gravel track cutting across the island from east to west. Kids can enjoy the rustic nature at a leisurely pace on wheels. On weekends, expect the two bicycle rental shops at Punggol Point Park to be completely “sold out” so factor in some waiting time or rent from shops that are further away in Punggol or Sengkang.
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This article was last reviewed on
Thursday, December 26, 2019
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