Let’s face it whatever way you look at is, exercise for most of us is a chore. It’s something we know we should be doing but pushing ourselves to do just that takes some building up to – unless you are one of the few friends on my Facebook timeline who compete in marathons just for fun, then hats off to you as you are a far better person than me!
With childhood obesity at its highest currently tearing our children away from their screens is high on our minds as parents, but we do know that they would much rather watch that YouTuber prank his friend or spend 24 hours hiding out in a store pretending no-one knows he is there, or even building an army in the latest computer game.
Exercising doesn’t have to be going to the gym though and it can be fun for all the family.
Here are 10 ways you can introduce a little exercise into your family’s day, even if it is only for 10 minutes a day.
While dinner is cooking, pop on the radio or your favourite song and dance your cares away. You could have a fortnight dance off with the kids, a flossing competition or even just a game of musical statues or bumps if you aren’t the best of dancers.
It’s not about who has the best moves just having fun.
This is a favourite in my house, and we do it every day while I am cooking the kid’s tea. Just dance is also another favourite.
- Scooters or bikes
This isn’t just for the kids, its fun for us adults too and it’s a great form of exercise. I just got myself an adult scooter so I can keep up with the kids when they ride theirs. I plan to start taking it on the school runs with us meaning I will be able to get home in the warm far faster.
Trampolines aren’t just fun for the kids.
If you have one in the garden then hop on with the kids and have a bounce off.
You can play games such as crack the egg – 1 person stands while the others sit crossed legged holding their feet, the person standing bounces around until the eggs crack or fall over.
We also play duck, duck goose on ours amongst other games.
(Good pelvic floor muscles are however needed for bouncing on the trampoline, or tena lady!)
- Swinging at the park
You’ll be surprised at just how many muscles you use by swinging alongside the kids in the park. Once you’ve given your leg muscles a workout, push your children on the swing to work on your arm muscles.
Play games with the kids. This is another favourite of ours which encourages the kids to get moving without them realising they are doing any exercise. You could even turn it into a language game for younger children by drawing the hopscotch grid with animals inside and asking them to make the animal sounds as they land on those squares.
You can pick up a skipping rope in the pound shop and it is so much fun, gets your heart rate up and you can later introduce skipping rhymes and games to add to the enjoyment
- Go head to head
If your kids have a Fitbit or even a pedometer set them head-to-head to out step each other. Mine love this and will often run up and down the stairs or even on the spot to beat each other
- Puddle jumping and singing in the rain
It’s not just for the kids! There is no such thing as bad weather, just inappropriate clothing – that’s a favourite saying in our household and the kids love nothing more than zipping up their raincoats, donning their wellies and grabbing their umbrellas to head out into the rain and jump around in muddy puddles. Its only water afterall and clothes can be cleaned – it’s also great fun snuggling up under a blanket watching a movie after to warm up.
Pop on your stakes and skate around the house or to the shops. I have a large kitchen so the kids happily skate around in there. You could also visit the roller disco
A quick 10-minute Yoga session is very relaxing before bed and helps to stretch out your bodies as well as relaxing your mind. You’ll find some videos over on YouTube for all ability levels.