Families nowadays are usually juggling tons of responsibilities that fill up their calendars quickly. Staying active and fit can be a challenge for parents and kids with a lot to do. However, as parents and the example, it’s up to you to show your kids how to prioritize their time and always ensure that they take the time to exercise and stay healthy. You’ll probably need to give everyone a bit of tough love and an extra push to motivate them to get moving. Here are some ways you can do exactly that and show your kids how a busy schedule can and should incorporate regular exercise:
Find Age-Appropriate Activities
For kids, tweens and teens, there needs to be an incentive other than “being healthy.” They need something that keeps them learning and having fun. Toddlers and preschoolers can benefit from activities that will help them continue developing their motor skills and coordination. Things like riding a trike, playing tag, duck duck goose, hide and seek, follow the leader and kicking or throwing a ball, are perfect.
Grade School-aged kids can benefit from a wide range of activities, all of which teach them more than just fitness lessons. Through organized sports like soccer, football, basketball, swimming, volleyball, dance, and gymnastics, they’ll learn how to work as part of a team. They’ll learn sportsmanship, being humble, working hard, integrity, accountability and so much more. Make it a house rule that everyone needs to choose at least 1 extracurricular activity to get involved in.
Take a Fitness Course Together
If they don’t want to join a school sports team, there are out of school things they can do like take a specialized dance course - anything from ballet to flamenco, African dance to hip hop. You can encourage your daughter, for example by taking a mommy-daughter yoga class! Make it a weekend or weeknight activity that you do together. You can throw on some matching mommy and me printed leggings and make it a date.
Weekend Family Park Outings
Make it a habit to do weekend bike rides at your local park as a family. Everyone can even rock matching family tees with custom messaging on it to make it fun outing that you bond over together. Maybe some family members prefer to rollerblade or skateboard - that’s fine, too! Get some friendly competition going by doing relay races. Choose a tree or a bench up ahead and have everyone run, bike or skate towards it. The first one there gets to skip a chore that week!
The important thing is to find something that works for the family as whole and on an individual level as well. It’s important to continue to stick to whatever fitness activities you choose for everyone. You are the role model and if you motivate everyone to stick to it, you’ll also be teaching your kids the very valuable lesson of follow-through and consistency. Consistency is key to reaching any goal and this will be a life lesson they’ll carry with them throughout their lives! It will not only help keep them healthy but will also have a positive impact on so many other aspects of their lives. Set them up for success, keep them fit, healthy and happy with a family fit plan!