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Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Wonder Woman: 11 Kid-Friendly Fitness Tips for Moms

Photo by Health Gauge (Flickr)

Anyone who knows me sees that there's nothing I love more than spending quality time with my kids. There are many different activities that we enjoy doing throughout the year. Throughout the summer, we eagerly venture outdoors for camping, swimming, and biking, while during the winter, we'll spend more time inside playing games. No matter what the temperature is outside, you can and should turn up the heat with exercise!

For busy parents, finding time to devote to self-care and fitness may seem akin to unearthing an ancient treasure. Fortunately, there are ways to squeeze in exercise that also invite your kids in on the fun! By incorporating your kids into some of your routines, it can help grow their confidence and foster a lifelong love for health. By eating healthy and staying fit together, it will strengthen your relationship with your kids, too; you become a team striving towards a wonderful common goal!

Play and move together to nurture your happy clan. Here are 11 kid-friendly fitness ideas to improve quality of life for the whole family!

  1. Join the YMCA: There is so much to do with a YMCA membership. The gym equipment is often top-notch, and it's delightful for the whole family to swim together. With countless classes to choose from and summer camp programs for kids, it's a great community to join and support.
  2. Zumba or Dance Classes: Who doesn't love to dance and jump around? Add some spunk to your step by joining a dance class with your kids. It will pump up your child's confidence and give some verve to your fitness repertoire.
  3. Exercise at the Playground: No more idly browsing your smartphone while your kids enjoy the playground! Get creative and transform the equipment into a strength-building obstacle course.
  4. Musical Chores: Doing chores around the house may not be the most exciting things for the kids, but you can spice it up. Play some music while you're doing chores together to keep things upbeat and flowing. Dancing will ensue, I assure you!
  5. Go for Walks: It's simple but effective and relaxing. You can tailor it to your time constraints, go exploring and have an easygoing conversation with your little ones.
  6. Fitness Breaks: When you're watching TV, don't just lounge during the commercial breaks. Do something, even if it's a few jumping jacks, to loosen the body and keep your heart happy!
  7. Charity Events: There's no better feeling than contributing to a good cause. Check out local charity runs, and go be a part of them with the kids! It will build their character and set the pace for a lifetime of giving back to the community.
  8. Gardening: Gardening is no dainty picnic. It gets you down, dirty and working muscles you never knew you had! The benefits are wonderful, though. Ask your kids to fetch water, dig holes and offer moral support. Before long, they can tend to their own patch of precious earth.
  9. Bike Riding: There are many perks to biking. It softens our carbon footprint, refines non-verbal communication and jogs our heart health. If your family bike ride ends at the ice cream shop, I won't tell! I may even see you there.
  10. Tag, You're It! This was my favorite game to play as a kid, and I still find the chase so thrilling! You'll be so caught up in trying to not become the dreaded "it" that you won't even notice your heart rate raising the roof. Play and fitness are the perfect match for parents.
  11. Anything is Better Than Nothing: Lastly, be realistic with your children, and let them know that being active, even for a little bit, is better than not being active at all. Be kind to yourself, do what you can, and know that loving our kids is what makes us wonder moms and dads.

Do you have any kid-friendly fitness tips to share? How do you find the time for self-care in the midst of the wild ride of parenting? I'd love to hear your input!

Find more about the author: Kim Hart

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