All of us have been spending extended time indoors due to
social distancing. For parents, the lockdown means having to play the role of a
teacher, an entertainer and a parent all at once. With outdoor time being
replaced with additional screen time, the current environment can feel
overwhelming not only to parents, but also to kids.
That’s why, it’s important for kids to engage in some form of moderate physical activity each day. It will not only keep them physically fit, but also improve mental health and overall well-being. Invite and encourage them to work out with you. That way, kids can use their pent-up energy and move around. And you’ll be able to get your workout-of-the-day done without any interruptions.
Here are 10 simple exercises that will help kids burn off that extra energy. You can make it fun by doing these family-friendly workouts with them and adding challenges.
Bear Crawls – Place your palms and feet flat on the floor, and crawl forward while arching your back. Make it more fun by racing your kids across the room.
Mountain Climbers – Get into a push-up position. Alternate bringing your knee to your elbow. You can do same side connections or crisscross. The idea is to move fast and work up a sweat!
Push-Ups – Straightforward and to the point. Start in a high plank position with your hands flat on the floor about shoulder-width apart, wrists under shoulders. Bend your arms and lower yourself as close to the floor as you can. Push back up to start. Drop to the knee if your form is compromised.
Supermans – Lie facedown, with your arms and legs extended. Slowly lift your arms and legs off the ground as high as you can. Keep the neck relaxed and look down at the ground. Hold, then lower.
Sit-Ups – Another classic. Lie on your back and bend your knees. Put your hands on the sides of or behind your neck. Bend your hips and waist to raise your body off the ground. Lower your body back to the starting position. Feel free to tuck your toes under the sofa or coffee table if you need a bit of support, or ask someone to hold your feet.
Star Jumps – Kids love this one! Start in a crouching position, hands by your ankles. Use your arms to help you explosively jump up in the air, expanding your legs and your arms so that you look like a large “X” in the air. Return and continue exploding with your star jumps!
Squats – Stand with your feet shoulder’s width apart, and do deep knee bends. Make sure keep your knees behind your toes and your arms out straight. Add a fun challenge and see who can get the deepest squat or the most squats in 60 seconds.
Burpees – Who is up for the challenge? Start with a jump up, then drop to a plank, add a push-up, and then jump back up. It should be one fluid motion and try to not pause between repetitions. Make it a bit easier by opting out of the push up if you need to.
Butterfly Kicks – Lay flat on your back, and extend your legs straight out. Imagine a swimmer, and begin to flutter kick your legs without bending at the knee. Start with your feet high off of the floor, as the move gets more difficult the closer the action is to the floor.
Crab walks – Sit with your knees bent and feet flat on the ground. Place palms on the ground behind you. Lift hips a few inches and walk forward on your hands and feet like a crab, then walk backward.
Make sure you guide them to follow the correct form during any workout. Take them through each movement before they start. If you want to make it more challenging, use a couple of tin cans, 1 litre water bottles, or a backpack full of books as weights. Keep an eye on them, especially if they’re attempting any exercise for the first time.
Apart from the exercises we’ve mentioned, you can also get your kids to try cartwheels, handstands, jumping jacks, skipping rope or even dancing. Make each routine as fun for them as possible – they’ll definitely look forward to it every day. Stay active and safe!
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