AMARILLO, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) — For Dr. Suzana Jensen, being physically active started early in her household.

“Physical activity for me, involved a lot of bowling,” said Dr. Jensen, a Pediatrician at Texas Tech Physicians in Lubbock. “It first started, when I was in elementary school, actually, my dad and I signed up for a summer adult youth bowling program.”

She said it’s a sport that she’s loved ever since she was a child, but with a deeper message.

“Looking back a lot of it is because I just loved spending the time with my dad, and it was a good bonding experience for us,” she said.

It’s those experiences that has health leaders like Dr. Tammy Camp, also a Pediatrician at Texas Tech Physicians, highlighting the benefits of families exercising together.

“Anything that you do together as a family, is really critical to building up those relationships and making kids feel like they have that opportunity to communicate back with their parent. It stimulates their imagination. It allows them to be creative with what they’re doing, and it burns off a lot of energy so that they sleep better at night. And so that they are able to capitalize on developing those further motor skills that we think are so important,” she explained.

Dr. Camp said the earlier kids can start getting active, the better.

“As kids get a little bit older, that 18 month to three years five year range, they love to climb, they love to play, so going out and walking with them, taking them to the park, participating with them while they play on a playground. Where you’re starting to incorporate more skills that are more activities that require a little bit more skill is extremely valuable,” she told us.

The benefits, health leaders have found, are more than just physical.

“When you do something a little more competitively, you kind of learn to manage your time better. That means you have to do your homework if you still want to be a good student. But it also kind of opened the world up to like different colleges and seeing different parts of the world,” Dr. Jensen noted.

For more information, including ideas and exercises for your kids, click here.