Making exercise fun for kids
In this technological age, with all the gadgets and devices, it is increasingly hard to get our children unplugged and moving. Here are a few ways you can make exercising fun for kids.
- For younger children, games such as Simon says, follow the leader or crazy dancing in front of the mirror are always popular. Hopping, jumping and skipping can easily be incorporated into these simple games.
- Older children often love to jump rope. Make it more interesting by having the children make up rhyming phrases to jump to. Or bring on the competition - who can jump the most times in a row?
- A simple walk to the park can be followed by playground jungle gym Olympics.
- How about a timed treasure hunt? Hide a variety of objects in the yard. Give the children a list of the objects and say, “Go!” Set a time limit - that will encourage them to get a move on!
- Twister is an awesome game for stretching and agility. Think of it as yoga in disguise!
- And don’t forget the old favorite - tag. For more variety, play hide and seek tag or freeze tag. Family relay races and bocce ball are also fun ways to get everyone involved.
It’s important to incorporate exercise into our family activities on a daily basis. When children see that their parents are being active, they’re more likely to model that behavior. And remember, children have a shorter attention span and will participate better with shorter exercises. No grueling marches in the hot sun or forced laps around the yard. It’s best for kids to think of exercise as fun and play. Getting the entire family involved is a great start to making exercise fun for everyone.
Finally, walking is exercise. Walk with a Doc is a walking program where you and your family can come walk and talk with pediatricians and healthcare providers every month! Check out our Virginia Beach location, date and time at www.walkwithadoc.org/.
About the Author
As a pediatrician, Penny Lane specializes in the care of infants, children and adolescents. She not only focuses on children's health conditions, but also places strong emphasis on preventive health care and health maintenance.
About Sentara Pediatric Physicians
At Sentara Pediatric Physicians, we understand that keeping your children healthy is more than just treating them when they have a cold. That's why we partner with you through every step of your child's development. And with locations throughout Southeastern Virginia, access to quality care is closer to your home than ever before. Find a Sentara Pediatric Physicians location near you or schedule an appointment today.