Fitness Fun: Time to Move
Get active and expend energy with these fitness activities with a full day of movement.
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Get moving with this fun game from Paperelli for I Heart Naptime. Download and assemble the three cubes—two are activity cubes and one is for timing. Roll two of the dice, and then perform the activity for the amount of time on the number dice.
Or recreate this idea on your own with Uno cards, Phase 10 cards, dice or spinners. Have the colors on the cards represent different activities, while the dice or spinner corresponds to the amount of time for the exercise.
No Equipment Required
Try this circuit from Akbar Gbajabiamila, the host of “American Ninja Warrior Junior,” for a family-friendly workout.
- Start with a 3-minute body weight cardio sequence: 30 second jumping jacks, 30 second high knees, 30 second butt kickers, 30 second body squats, 30 second jumping jacks and 30 second mountain climbers.
- Next, do one minute circuits of planks—high planks, forearm planks and up-down planks.
- Walk like an animal. Try crab walks or bear crawls for an educational twist on exercise.
- End with relay races. Try suicide drills, where each family member runs to the end of the driveway and back, tagging the next family member until each person has completed the run. Or divide into teams to make it a competition.
Read about the benefits of yoga and check out our tips for practicing as a family.
Make yoga into a game with these classic games you probably have on hand.
- Jenga: Place small stickers on Jenga blocks, and make a key indicating which pose corresponds to each sticker. When the child pulls out a block, they’ll see which pose must be performed by all the players. When the tower falls, perform a challenging yoga pose for several breaths.
- Operation: Perform surgery and then perform poses that will help that part of the body feel better.
- Scrabble or Bananagrams: Create pose names and then scrabble them up. When kids unscramble the letters, they’ll have to do the pose.
Find more game ideas and full instructions at YogaKids.
Take cardboard boxes, rope, sheets, wood slats and other materials and use existing structures, like your swingset or the trees, to create an obstacle course in the yard. Combine the obstacles with activities, such as they have to make a basket, ring a tree branch with a horseshoe or hop through the chalk-drawn hopscotch on the driveway, as part of the course. Make it a competition by timing how long it takes them to complete it. Older kids may want to create their own version of the obstacle course.
Try digital workouts from LES MILLS On Demand digital fitness platform. Get unlimited access to a collection of workouts for kids ages 4-16. The “BORN TO MOVE” series sets movement to music, and the 20-40 minute videos are broken down by age groups.
Turn your child’s favorite sport into an at-home activity. i9 Sports has live soccer drills on their Facebook page. Shoot hoops in the driveway; play whiffleball, baseball or flag football in the yard; create your own putt putt golf course; play table tennis on your dining room table or hook up Wii Sports for baseball, bowling and more.
It’s important to get your kids to eat fruits and vegetables. Challenge them to eat 5 servings of fruits and veggies with these delicious snacks they can make:
- Serve vegetables with hummus or fruit with yogurt.
- Top bagels with hummus, cream cheese, cucumber, carrot, lettuce, tomato or avocado for a delicious veggie sandwich.
- Grill potatoes, onions, zucchini, mushrooms and other vegetables on a kabob. See recipe here.
- Just as delicious, but not quite as popular, you can also grill fruit. See full recipe here.
- Slice apples or pears and serve with nut butter.
- Top peaches with cottage cheese.
- Make a banana, golden raisin and peanut butter quesadilla.
- Fill celery with peanut butter and raisins; guacamole and corn; cream cheese and grated carrot; or hummus and sunflower seeds.
- Combine cheeses with cantaloupes, melons, apples, pears, asparagus, grapes, cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, carrots or zucchinis.
- Freeze bananas overnight. Blend with milk to make a frozen treat.
- Drink fruits or veggies with smoothies. Try this Orange Creamsicle Smoothie.
- Stuff dates with pistachios or almonds.