As kids grow up, they mirror the example set by their parents, learning about life through imitation. By introducing your children to fitness at an early age you are shaping their attitude towards exercise.
Alongside exercise, it’s also important to introduce your kids to the basic elements of nutrition. It’s important that we view exercise and nutrition as mutually dependent and start to develop an understanding of how one effects the other.
The last thing you want to do is make exercise feel like a chore, but reminders to drink plenty of water during exercise will teach your kids good habits.
Before you start…
It’s important to always begin with a warm-up. While kids are unlikely to get injured with an exercise routine like this, by warming up properly you’ll teach them good habits for the future.
The warm-up raises your heart rate and gets your body and muscles ready for exercise. Start with gentle activity like jogging on the spot and slowly build it up before doing a good few minutes of stretching.
Let’s get started
We’ve listed below some fantastic exercises that should keep your children engaged throughout the workout. Take a break when you need to and adapt the work and rest periods to your experience level. Perhaps start with 20 seconds of activity followed by 20 seconds of rest for each activity and build it up over time.
Start off with an old favorite! Begin standing with your feet shoulder width apart before jumping and extending your arms and legs to produce a star shape, as you touch the ground jump again to return to the original position.
Start in a neutral position before sidestepping to one side, bring your inside foot behind you and go into a lunge before returning back to a neutral stance and side-stepping to the other side to repeat the exercise.
Start in a standing position, bend from your hip and plant your hands on the ground in front of you, as close to your feet as you can. Inch your hands along the floor planting them further and further from your feet before returning to them back to your feet and repeating.
This one is fairly self-explanatory! Lower into a squat position before jumping forward. Cushion your landing by squatting again before jumping back and repeat. Add a ‘ribbit’ to really get in character.
Assume a bridge position with your feet and hands planted on the floor and your stomach facing the sky, kick each leg out in front of you alternating each time.
Start on all fours before taking your weight on your hands and feet. Crawl across the floor forwards and backward changing direction at random. Add a ‘roar’ for maximum effect!
Lie on your back and raise your legs a couple inches off the ground before alternately lifting them higher by kicking upwards.
Lay on your back with your feet and arms extended upwards. Reach your right arm back and your left foot forward, return to the original position before moving your left arm back and right foot forward and repeat.
If you find your child is losing interest, then try and incorporate exercise into traditional games to keep it exciting.
Tic Tac Toe Relay
Set up a 3X3 grid in the park or in the garden, mark out a starting point about 10 or 15 metres from the grid. Divide eight counters between two teams so each team has four items of a particular colour. Start with two players going head to head and running to the grid to place down their first counter. Each team is trying to line up three counters in a row, after using all four counters, if no one has managed that then the players can return to the grid to replace one of the existing counters until someone gets three in a row.
If this all sounds a little complicated then this video explains all: https://bit.ly/2M0Vxvx
Red Light Green Light
This game is a fantastic and simple way to make your existing workout more interesting. Have one person leading the workout shouting “Red Light” and “Green Light” at random times. When the leader shouts “Red Light” everyone stops where they are until the leader shouts “Green Light” to resume the workout.