Family Jump! From Left to Right: Hannah, Paige, Sara, Austin, Jesse, Dad, Erin & Mom – Photo Courtesy: Evil Erin
One of the greatest things a parent can teach children is the importance of physical activity. The activity doesn’t have to always be regarded as a “workout,” but can be used as a healthy opportunity for family bonding.
The best way to solve the problem of inactivity and lack of family bonding is to incorporate exercise into family time. If you’re not sure how to do that, it’s okay! Below is a list of activities that are sure to keep you fit, while having family oriented fun!
1. Explore the Great Outdoors
Family Outing – Photo Courtesy: Liz West
Pack up the family, a lunch, and head to the local park. Depending on your geographical location, you may have the opportunity to hike Mother Nature. If so, bring a lot of water.
If you live in a more flat region, you can check out nearby trails. You can create a whole day of family time in just one hike; spend time enjoying nature, fresh air, and pleasant conversations with the family.
2. Jump in the Water
Family Fun in Orlando, Florida, USA – Photo Courtesy: Pacdog
Some pool time is a refreshing way to spend your family moments. Instead of saying, “let’s swim laps,” try implementing a set of races. Turning swimming laps into a game will increase the likelihood of your kids to participate. If you’re not into races, try other pool centered games, like Marco Polo.
3. Play Cornhole
Deanna, mid-cornhole – Photo Courtesy: Joe Loong
Cornhole is sweeping the nation as a family favorite. The game consists of two teams, each with a set of beanbags, and you earn points based on if your beanbag makes it onto the other team’s board (learn more about the cornhole game here). This game is great because it is simple, with just a dash of competition. If you have young children, this game is the way to go. You can play cornhole in your backyard, so you don’t even have to pack anything up; home is where the fun is!
4. Go for a Bike Ride
A family on a Bike Ride in Shanghai, China – Photo Courtesy: Kamal Zharif
Bike rides are great for bonding in the fresh air. A leisurely peddle through the neighborhood gets you and the kids out of the house, soaking up the sun, and exercising without even realizing it! If the gang is in need of a little more adventure, head to a local bike trail – but remember to bring helmets.
5. Frolic in the Field
Wholesome Family Scene: Kids play skip rope on Morro Strand State Beach, California, USA – Photo Courtesy Mike Baird
We don’t actually mean frolicking (unless you really want to). Grab some sort of ball – football, soccer ball, baseball, kickball – and find a field to organize your own family scrimmage. Not only do sports tie in physical activity and family bonding, but they also teach kids the importance of teamwork. A little life lesson on a family outing can go a long way.
6. Head to the Local Recreation Center
Families form the core of many running groups… here, a Mom with her kids smiles into the camera. Photo Courtesy: Mike Baird
Community or recreation centers are a great place to bring your kids. It usually doesn’t cost much for a few hours at the facility – and you can do a lot with that time. Use the indoor basketball hoops for some friendly competition or take advantage of the upscale playgrounds.
Family exercise is an upbeat way to bring everyone together. So head to your local park or stay at home and enjoy each other’s company while ensuring everyone’s health.
Ellen is a child development specialist. She focuses on tips for building family unity and optimizing health.