I think everyone can agree that physical activity is extremely important for our health; getting kids active is easily done if you – as a parent – show them. That’s right – it is OUR responsibility as parents to ensure that our children are getting the appropriate amount of physical activity. I find it really easy to keep the kids active in the summer – walking to the park, going for bike rides, throwing/kicking around a ball in the backyard….but, then the weather turns colder and I don’t want to go outside…I want to hibernate in my nice warm house.
This can make it difficult to get active – but it doesn’t need to be. Sometimes it just takes a little extra creativity on your part (remember – if we as parents/role models are not active, our kids probably won’t be either). I have a few ideas for you – some are easy at home activities and others are out of house – but all fun and family friendly! If you are heading outside, dress appropriately and you will likely stay warm (boots, snow pants, winter jacket, warm mitts, neck warmer and hat)
- Family dance party: Crank up some music and get everyone dancing! Make sure there is lots of floor space so no-one gets hurt, but it’s a great way to create some awesome family memories AND get that heart rate up!
- Organize a scavenger hunt: Set up “stations” and each family member has to perform a task before getting the next clue (10 jumping jacks, hula hoop for 30 seconds, hop on 1 foot for 20 seconds etc).
- Take a walk: Yes, it is cold – but on some of the nicer days winter walks can be beautiful.
- Shovel your lane way: Even young kids can help out cleaning off the lane way/walkway…just make sure that you teach them how to do it properly so they don’t hurt themselves.
- Skating: We live in Ottawa – and have access to the Rideau Canal – FREE skating (and you can enjoy a beavertail too!) If that’s too cold for you, then look up the schedule for public skating at many of the area indoor rinks.
- Skiing: I never managed to pick it up, but there are a number of ski hills in the area.
- Organized activities: There are a number of programs you can enroll your children in (martial arts, gymnastics, swimming, skating, hockey, indoor soccer etc)
- Go Sledding - get your winter gear on and grab your toboggan, then head over to a local hill for some sledding fun! My hubby builds one in our front yard for us!