Summer Fitness For Kids

kids at party

The school bell has rung for the final time this year. The kids are home. So, how can you keep your kids moving this summer? It does not take a lot of money, time, or advance planning to add fitness into your kids' summertime activities. Here are a few summer fitness ideas for kids of all ages:

Family Walks - Schedule a family walk through the neighborhood after dinner. Ask your local parks and recreation service about hiking trails in your area. If the weather is uncooperative, try a walk through the local mall.

Vacation Days - Try a vacation day to the beach, with boogie boards to boot. Or try a local theme park. All of the walking from ride to ride adds up.

Kids Camps - Check out your YMCA or Boys & Girls Club to find out what sports camps are available this summer.

Neighborhood Games - Invite the neighborhood kids for an old fashioned game of hide and seek, kick the can, or stickball.

Buy the Basics - If expensive exercise equipment is not in your budget, just purchase a few jump ropes and balls for your children to use.

Family Challenges - Set up some family challenges for the summer. Keep track of each family member's progress on a chart. Who can do the most push-ups during a segment of television commercials? Who can complete 100 jumping jacks without stopping?

Crazy Adventures - Older kids may enjoy skateboarding parks or indoor rock climbing gyms. With the proper safety equipment in place, these activities are a good way to keep older kids from becoming couch potatoes.

Set the Example - What are you doing to set the example for your child? Does your child see you participating in recreational sports, fitness classes, weight training, bike riding, or outdoor walks?

School is out for the summer. But that does not mean that kids are resigned to three months on the sofa. Aim for one form of family exercise each day. Your kids, and you, will enjoy the health benefits for years to come.