by Natasha Maltseva on 12/06/16
Winter is coming, and kids – like adults – can fall into the trap of simply hunkering down inside and never getting any physical activity. Not only is this not a healthy way to live, but you may want your kids to get out and do something just to burn off that excess energy. Below are a few ways that you can encourage an active lifestyle all winter long.
Get them involved in school sports.
Your child doesn't have to go out to be the captain of the football team. Just being involved in any sport and practicing during the week gives him or her a way to exercise and spend time with peers after school.
Take a dance class.
Maybe your child has no interest in competitive sports; there are still plenty of ways to get physical activity in a group setting. At LaVida Studio, for instance, kids can enroll in dance programs. They get to hang out with other kids, learn new skills, stay in good physical shape, and enjoy themselves all at the same time. Meanwhile, they learn contemporary dance styles like hip-hop and pop culture, which require and burn a lot of energy. Kids love these classes since they can dance to their favorite songs.
Head outside, just not for long.
It's bitter cold, so you don't expect your kids to spend hours outside, but that doesn't mean the winter weather can't be fun. Focus on short-term activities and playing pre-planned outdoor games. Some people set up competitions, like races across the yard, and the winner gets hot chocolate. These prizes can certainly inspire children to participate.
Take dance breaks.
Even five minutes of activity can make a big difference. When things slow down and children aren't moving enough, jump in and lead them in dance breaks. These are exciting for kids, especially when you blast their favorite songs, and they can burn off energy in just minutes. A few dance breaks a day makes a huge difference.
Embrace creative indoor games.
It's easy to pop in a movie or watch TV, but remember that there's plenty you can do inside that is active and engaging. Some people set up tents and do “indoor camping,” which the kids love because it seems so outrageous and new to them. Others play fast-paced indoor games like tag. If you have yard games, like bean bag toss, you can set them up inside – just make sure to get anything breakable out of the way first.
Once you get started, you'll find it's not actually that hard to get kids involved in activities that they'll love all the way until next summer.