Finding ways for you and your family to get active throughout the day doesn’t require special equipment or loads of extra free time.
By building short but fun bursts of physical activity into your daily routine, you’ll find you and your kids are more active—and before you know it, those minutes will really add up.
Here are some small ways to build physical activity into your daily routine.
Morning and bedtime routines
1. Have a dance party. Make meal prep, setting the table, and doing the dishes a fun activity for everyone by putting on some of your favourite family tunes. Need some inspiration? Try our playlist with 57 awesome family dance party jams.
2. Turn tooth-brushing into a balance challenge. Ask your child to balance on one foot while brushing, alternating feet when they switch sides with their toothbrush.
3. Wind down and stretch. Begin your bedtime routine 10 minutes early and follow an online children’s yoga flow program, or make up your own poses to wind down together.
During the day
4. Play outside. Draw a hopscotch pattern on your sidewalk to practice counting or choose any of these six sidewalk chalk learning activities from Scholastic.
5. Learn and move at the same time. Go over sight words by placing word cards on the floor and pretending they’re stones in a stream. When your child jumps on a “stone,” ask them to say the word out loud.
6. Make reading silly. When reading together, choose a “fun word” that appears throughout the book (i.e. “chicken,” “Tigger,” etc.) and link it to a fun action (i.e. flapping your wings like a chicken, bouncing up and down, etc.). When you or your child read the word, do the movement together before continuing the story.
7. Go for a walk as a family. Head out and around the block together (maybe even try out some great apps to explore your community).
8. Take a brain break. If you’re working and doing school at home, set a timer to remind everyone to take brain breaks every hour or two. Get up from your desk and invite your child to play sock ball games, kick a ball outside, or put on some music and dance together.
9. Make cleaning up fun. Turn it into an activity by doing a “10-minute tidy.” Set a timer for 10 minutes and encourage your child to use as many different movements as possible (jumping, hopping, rolling, skipping, bear crawls, etc.) to move from one area to another while putting items away.
10. Turn laundry into a relay. Have your child race to put groups of items away (i.e. all their socks) before coming back for the next group. Laundry has never been so fun!
Looking for more great ideas to keep your child active at home? Check out this printable recipe for an active day at home.
The sure-bet recipe to raise kids who love (and want) to get active
49 fun physical activities to do with kids aged 2 to 4