November 29, 2014

5 Ways to Get Active With Kids

By Contributing Writer, Debra Worth
I have been trying to get in the habit of regular exercise since my youngest child turned 6 weeks. A few months in, and while I am doing better, I still am not in the habit. Some days adding “exercise” to my to-do list seems as easy as establishing world peace.

The other day as I was energetically pushing a 60 pound box of giggling kids around our wooden floor I thought,  This is fun. This is what I need more of.  Why do I make “getting active” so complicated?”

My body craves deep breaths, a faster heart rate, and activity in some way even if I can not do the traditional form of exercising. Getting active makes me feel better and more energetic. When I do it with kids they have a fun time (and are close enough to me I know they are not experimenting with making glue out of garlic powder).

So, today I am going to share with you 5 simple ways to get active with kids. If it is all you can do, it is better than nothing. If it leads to something more, great!

5 Ways to Get Active With Kids

Note: These are just some simple ideas, not professional advice.

Walk or Run – Rather than just adding it to a list of things to do, try and find creative times to walk. Do you have somewhere you go once or twice a week within walking distance? Walk instead of drive. Were you wanting to visit with another mommy friend? Walk and chat.

Personally, I find putting the kids in the stroller and walking for errands less stressful than driving. One trip to the grocery store can get in some exercise, fulfill an errand that might be stressful otherwise, and be quality time with the kids.

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Dance – Close the blinds, pick up the various dolls and teddy bears so no one will break a neck, turn on music, and dance. Then dance some more. Then laugh at your kids’ signature moves and show them how it is “really” done. Laugh and dance some more.

Gigglecise - There are many versions of this, but basically it is being intentionally active fun with kids. Make them “fly”. Push them around in a box (I usually set a timer for this). Put them on your legs as resistance for lifting them up, etc.

Exercise VideosShort exercise videos are great for moms. I am using fit2b right now for both healing my diastasis recti and for some general exercise. I like routines that I am standing up the entire time because I am able to wear my baby if need be, and I do not have to tell little kids to get off of me when I get on the floor. Safety note: never wear a baby to do an exercise you would not do while holding a baby (with the exception of your hands being free.)

Visit The Park (and sit on the bench as little as possible) – Have fun with the kids. Put the iPhone down, walk (a responsible distance) away from it and go push on the swings, climb on the slide, have fun!  Click here for quick, easy playground exercises.   For perfect clarity, I will let it be known I rarely do this… but I enjoy it when we do.

What are some ways you like to get active with kids?

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Comments

  1. Gardening is also very good. Get them to dig, weed, water, untie the hose and put it back, rake leaves and bag it, mix in fertilizer into to the flower beds, pick and sort your vegetables and help with landscaping.

    You must first give them a safety lesson and maybe show them a couple if videos from YouTube about what happens if they don’t follow good safety practices. No amount of telling them will get to them as much as a video.

    Of course this is not possible in winter if you are in the Snow Belt. In that case get them to shovel snow and build a snow house. You can make some pretty good ones over winter and take pictures.

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