Exercise for Kids: Shake Out Extra Energy

Exercise for Kids: Shake Out Extra Energy

Jennifer A. DiGiovanni headshotPosted by Jennifer A. DiGiovanni, guest blogger

After an extremely long winter, your kids have most likely stored up enough excess energy to power a small city. As springtime kicks into high gear, the longer daylight hours increase everyone’s alertness, and parents always seem to be trying to encourage exercise for kids to keep them physically fit and active. Looking for new ideas? Here are a few quick-start activities to try.

Dance Party

Turn on the radio or a pop in a CD to encourage fun movement and aerobic activity. Games like freeze dance, musical chairs, or limbo are great ways to have fun with your kids while exercising. On rainy days, have a playlist with their favorite songs prepared ahead of time and be ready to switch it on whenever your kids begin to experience cabin fever.

Set a Challenge

child on jungle gymAre your high-energy kids also fierce competitors? Use this to your advantage by challenging them to achieve physical activity goals. Have them run laps around the backyard and ask them to count each lap out loud as they finish.

Kids also love to beat the clock. Set a timer and record their lap times on a sheet of paper to encourage them to increase their speed and go for a house record. Looking for another quick and easy exercise for kids? Challenge them to a certain number of successful jumps using a jump rope.

Working on increased flexibility and coordination is also important for youngsters. To encourage flexible movement, set up an age-appropriate obstacle course in the backyard. Challenge kids to jump over small items, duck under large items, and go through hula hoops or outdoor play tents.

Use Technology

Additional fun workouts for kids can be found on free apps available for smart devices or laptops. Programs like Sworkit guide short workouts—as little as five minutes—and are easy for kids to follow. To keep kids active, try the sun salutations yoga session, which changes poses every six seconds for continuous movement and stretching.

Work and Play Together

As a parent, setting an example of daily physical activity is one of the best ways to reinforce a healthy lesson for your kids. Aside from family walks or playing exercise games for kids, encourage your children to help around the house. Watering and weeding the garden, helping to wash the car, or picking up toys are ways to keep parents and kids moving together all day long.

What are your family’s favorite exercise games for kids? Let us know in the comments.

Image source: Flickr