Children over the age of 2 should play and exercise at least 60 minutes a day to stay healthy, recommends the American Heart Association. Unfortunately, only about one out of four children between the ages of 12 and 15 actually get this much exercise, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. One of the best ways for kids to get enough exercise is to spend more time outdoors. If you’re struggling to get your kids outside and moving around, here are some ideas to inspire you:
Play Backyard Games
There are plenty of physical activities you and your kids can do in your own backyard or at a nearby park. Some popular backyard games require minimal equipment, including bean bag toss, bocce ball, croquet, shuffleboard and kickball. Others need larger equipment to be installed, such as tetherball, volleyball and badminton. You also can set up a basketball hoop in your driveway or a ping-pong table in your garage.
If that doesn’t give you enough ideas, Listotic lists 32 backyard games, ranging from Twister to running a backyard obstacle course.
Get Your Kids Involved in a Sport
Getting your kids involved in an organized sport is another great way to get them outside. The CDC reports that the most popular physical activities for boys include basketball, running, football and walking, and the top activities for girls are running, walking, basketball and dancing. Parenting reviews these and other top sports, such as soccer and baseball, to help you choose the right sport for your child. It also notes what your kids gain, any risks and how to keep them safe while playing.
Give Them a Bike or a Skateboard
Physical activities involving riding or traveling can help you get your kids outdoors. These options usually appeal to kids because they look cool and can be seen in TV shows and movies. They also come with a built-in community, which can be found at the skate park or beach, which can be great for making new friends. Bike riding is among the top five physical activities for both boys and girls, according to the CDC, and there are over nine million skateboarders in the United States, according to the Public Skatepark Development Guide. Surfing, rollerskating and skiing are a few other popular activities in this category.
To participate safely in these types of sports, your kids need to have the right kind of equipment, including sport-appropriate clothing and shoes such as skate shoes. To make it more fun for your kids, let them pick out the patterns and colors they like or get customized gear to let them express themselves while being active.
Take Them to a Park or Campground
Visiting public parks or going camping are great ways for the whole family to enjoy being outdoors together. Parks usually have basketball courts, tennis courts, volleyball courts, tetherball and swimming pools along with plenty of space for other outdoor games. Campgrounds offer most of the same benefits as well as the opportunity to go hiking and climbing. Ultimatecampresource.com provides dozens of additional ideas for outdoor games and activities to try on your next camping trip.
Identity Magazine is all about empowering women to get all A’s in the game of life — Accept. Appreciate. Achieve.TM Every contributor and expert answer the Identity 5 questions in keeping with our theme. Their answers can be random and in the moment or they can be aligned with the above article. As a team, we hope to inspire and motivate ourselves and inspire you to get all A’s.
1. What have you accepted within your life, physically and/or mentally? What are you still working on accepting?
I have accepted that God sometimes has different plans than I do, and I am still working on accepting that some of my plans don’t always work out.
2. What have you learn to appreciate about yourself and/or within your life, physically and mentally? What are you still working on to appreciate?
I have learned to appreciate my unique gifts, and I am still working on appreciating small things I sometimes take for granted.
3. What is one of your most rewarding achievements in life? What makes YOU most proud? What goals and dreams do you still have?
I am most proud of my stepdaughter and one of my goals is to see her graduate.
4. We all have imperfections, so we think. The truth–we are all perfectly imperfect. What are your not-so-perfect ways? What imperfections and quirks create who you are–your Identity?
I am not perfect at some things that are easy for other people and I am very good at some things other people can’t do.
5. “I Love My…” is an outlet for you to express and appreciate all the positive traits that make you…well… YOU! Sharing what you love about yourself will make you smile, feel empowered, and uplift your spirit and soul. (we assure you!) Identity challenges you to complete the phrase “I Love My…?”
I love my books.