Some ideas are listed to motivate the children!
Any game that takes children out of doors is good for them. Switch off the television, shut the computer down and shoo them outsides. Dredge from memory the childhood games we all played — cops and robbers, I spies, lock and key — to name a few. All of these involve running around, and build social skills too as these are group activities.
PS: Soccer or football is a great option too, and these days, the little girls are getting way better than their brethren. So, get the kids in the block together and see if you can organise a mini league.
Health benefits: At least an hour’s outdoor play helps rev up metabolic rate, burns more calories and aids development and strengthening of muscles.
Add-ons: Help develop social skills, reduce stress, boosts imagination and creativity.
Add to the fun
If there are not too many children in the neighbourhood for your kids to go and sign up in a soccer team, there are other options, and thankfully, very inexpensive ones. Buy them frisbees or a skipping rope and by all means a bicycle if your area is safe enough. Frisbees involve a lot of running and jumping around, while a skipping rope provides children with a full-body workout.
And if you have a bit of space, a backyard or a long drive, try and see if you can fix a hoop somewhere for the children to throw balls through. This is fun, addictive and soon gets the whole family clamouring for their own turn.
Health benefit: Revs metabolism, burns calories, develops calf and thigh muscles, raises heart rate, provides more nutrients and oxygen to the brain to make the children more focused and alert.
Add-ons: Improves co-ordination, busts away stress
A lot of children are forced to stay indoors, either because their neighbourhoods don’t afford them space to go play outside or because it isn’t safe enough or there are no children of the same age around. For such children, plan lessons that weave together fun and a work-out. Take them for a dance class, it may be bharatanatyam or Bollywood dancing. As long as the child has fun there, she would stay hooked and get her dose of exercise from it. Rock-climbing courses are great too, as it appeals to a child’s sense of adventure. Try and incorporate activities like swimming into your daily routine, so that fitness becomes a way of life rather than a planned aspect of it.
Health benefits: Improves cardiovascular health, tones muscles.
Add ons: Improves posture, balance and coordination, improves social skills, instils discipline and a sense of focus, improves self esteem and cures children of shyness.