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Make Exercise Family Time

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Want to get a workout in and also some family time? Well, you can do both if you get a little creative. Also, your kids will more than likely enjoy it more if you are sweating along with them. It can be as easy as raking the leaves, playing tag, making snow angels, or dancing around the house.

Spring is on it's way so get outside and if you go for a run then let your kids ride their bikes along with you or in-line skate. They don't have to be doing the same activity as you. Run, bike, in-line skate to a park where they can play and you can do lunges and squats around the park. Pull-ups and push-ups as well. If your kids are like mine they will try and mimic what you're doing and have a great time. Take them to a hiking trail and walk and discover nature. There are lots of things you can do. Here are some tips to get them involved from the Sacramental Bee newspaper .

1. Avoid the word "exercise" and instead look for ways to be physically active. Go for a walk together after dinner, for example.

2. Keep it short and plan several activities rather than one long sustained exercise time.

3. Give kids time to rest. They don't know how to pace themselves as well as adults.

4. Let kids pick the activity. It's fun to introduce kids to your favorite sports, but let them choose as well. They'll get a kick out of seeing their parents learn something new.

5. Look for group activities. Socializing with friends helps engage kids.

6. Find outings that encourage conversation. One-on-one time with Mom and Dad can make biking or hiking fun for kids.

7. Play backyard games. Go low-tech and play tag, capture the flag or kickball.

8. Keep a ball or Frisbee in the trunk of the car. Pull them out at the park for active fun.

9. Be creative! Young kids enjoy using their imaginations along with their muscles. Suggest they run like a tiger or jump like a kangaroo.

10. Encourage, don't pressure. Enticing kids with fun activities works better than shaming them about being overweight or out of shape.

A study published in Pediatrics last spring found that teens who played sports with their parents were more likely to get A's in math and English, and less likely to engage in risky behaviors such as smoking or drinking alcohol. So get active with your kids and make family time exercise time as well.


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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.


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