Sometimes literally. If you’re feeling a smidge guilty that I’m going to call you out for being the former, rest assured, I am right there with you, sister. Exercising with kids was never my cup of tea when I wanted to get a good workout in. I mean, my whole reason for wanting to workout in the first place was to have some alone time. But, I know some of you love it and to you I say, “Go get ’em, sister!” because you have a lot more patience than I do when I’m trying to lift weights or run.
That being said, there are times when exercising with kids can be downright fun! Like, laugh so hard you cry, fun. Don’t believe me? Try these three fun fitness activities with your kids the next time you all need to burn off some energy and calories!
3 Fun Ideas for Exercising with Kids
My daughter is a Just Dance champion, I tell you. She knows the moves and has rhythm and coordination that she surely did not get for me. I’m lucky if I can make it through a dance without tripping over my own feet. BUT, having a dance party with her (my sons never want to join in), is fabulous fun! We compete against the computer, but we also compete a bit with each other. From What Does the Fox Say? to Macarena, there’s some serious sweating and laughing going on for about 30 minutes. So, break out the video game console, lace up your sneakers, and get dancing!
SIMON SAYS RUN/WALKS
Take turns calling out ways to run or walk around the block for some fun and heart pounding exercise. “Waddle like a duck” and “Hop like a bunny” pair nicely with “Move as slow as a sloth” and “March like a Marching Band Trumpet Player in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade!” Do each style of move for about 10-15 seconds or pick a spot in the sidewalk where you’ll switch. Don’t be surprised if your littles want to go around the block a couple of times! Just be sure to wear your pedometer to rack up some serious steps!
I know most people don’t normally think of doing yoga with kids. After all, yoga is calm and quiet…kids typically are neither of those things. However, yoga with kids is a great way to bond and teach them how to focus their energy and calm themselves down. Now, keep in mind that when you start this whole yoga thing with your kids you may have some resistance or it may last an entire 20 seconds before they start jumping around. That’s okay. Just do it again the next day. And don’t be afraid to let them watch you practice some yoga poses, because they love to imitate. You might just find your full-steam ahead kiddo standing in tree pose next to you one day.
The most important thing to remember about whatever type of exercise you do with your kids is to watch the timing. Don’t set yourselves up for failure by doing it right before nap time. Not only will they be cranky, but so will you. If you homeschool, doing it before lessons in the morning can be a great way to wake up their brains and get some pent-up energy out before we start learning. Remember, it’s okay if exercising with your kids isn’t your most favorite thing in the whole wide world. But, I would encourage you to try one of the ideas above to see if maybe you’ll loathe it a little bit less. 😉