Most Americans don’t get enough exercise, and that includes kids, too. The rise of digital activities like TV, computers, tablets and smartphones, and video games has made it extremely easy to have fun while barely moving a muscle.
Unfortunately, our health has suffered in the process. So what can we do? A good place to start is by finding ways to get the whole family more active. So here are some helpful fitness tips for adults and kids alike to get more exercise!
1. Plan Something Active During Weekends or Vacations
Don’t be afraid to use some of your downtime for active family time. Think riding bikes, taking walks in the park, going swimming, or walking or riding bikes to the playground for a couple of hours. You’ll get active while spending some quality time together!
2. Keep It Simple
Ask your family for simple ideas of how you can all be more active. Some ideas include:
- Parking the car further away in the restaurant or grocery store parking lot
- Taking stairs instead of an elevator or escalator at work, school, or the mall
- Going to the mall just to walk around and window shop
- Walking or biking to the store instead of driving
- Taking the dogs for an extra or longer walk
You can also simply block off a little chunk of time each day for exercise. Treat it like any other important part of your schedule and before you know it, you’ll turn it into a habit.
3. Go for a Walk Together
Walking is simple and can be done just about anywhere. It’s an easy way to increase your daily exercise and improve your health.
Start a family habit of walking around the neighborhood together in the evenings after dinner or on weekend mornings (and try to go without cell phones, or at least avoid using them on the walk). Use the time to reflect on the day or week and share what’s happening in your lives. It’s a great way to reconnect away from any TV or smartphone screens.
4. Set Technology Boundaries
We can all use less time on our technological devices and more time in the present.
Try setting a boundary for yourself or your family by saying no technology between a certain time period, such as the few hours after dinner, on Sunday mornings, or right after school. Use that time for something active or productive!
5. Get Involved in Sports or the Community
If you have young kids, encourage them to try different sports or activities to find something they like. Adults can get involved in local adult sports teams, fitness classes, or active meetups like running clubs.
Your local community will also likely have activities to offer. Look into events with your local YMCA or parks and recreation department like basketball, swimming, or golf, or join an activity for a good cause like 5Ks, walk-a-thons, or active community service opportunities.
The Bottom Line
Modern life and busy schedules can make it hard to get enough daily exercise, but it’s not impossible. All it takes is a little planning, a little creativity, and making some schedule tweaks.
And when you take on physical fitness as a family or with other people you care about, it becomes a beautiful opportunity to bond with and support one another in better health! Use some of the family fitness tips above to get started today.