Active for Life is one year old

Active for Life is one year old!

Our First Birthday contest is now closed. Thanks to everyone who entered.

You know how much can happen in a year. One moment you’re wondering what to do with the tiny, delicate creature in your arms. The next thing you know, she’s crawling. And it seems like before you even have time to move the breakables off the lower shelves, she’s walking. And even climbing.

For us it started with a public service announcement called Recess. The 30-second video featured children sharing alarming statistics about their lack of exercise and declining health.

Since then we’ve been trying  to live up to our promise to educate, inspire, and help you guide your child to becoming physically literate. In his editorial this month, editor-in-chief Richard Monette talks about how much we’ve grown and how much we’ve learned from you.

We’re ecstatic that Active for Life has been active (see what we did there?) for a year. We’ve shared a lot and learned even more. Thank you for joining us on the journey.

The Active for Life physical activity pledge

Here’s how those of us who work with Active for Life plan on celebrating today. We’re all going to spend an hour with our children doing a physical activity. The pictures you see to the right are us, caught up in the fun. Feel free to join us. Share in the comments the pledge you and your family will undertake today.

  • Sunny is going on a hike with her kids and will work on balancing.
  • Sara is going to help her two kids learn to ride their bicycles, which is so affirming that it has them jumping for joy.
  • Sally is going to work on developing physical literacy with her kids by doing some fun activities, like tightrope walking.
  • Richard, Liz, and their two kids are going to use an agility ladder to do the CS4L warm-up.
  • Blaine and his family are going on a long hike in the forest near their home, with stops along the way to throw rocks into the river.
  • David is taking his family on a bike ride.
  • Christian is going to play on the trampoline with his nieces and nephews.
  • Jim is going to play soccer for an hour. Or more. Probably more.
  • Robert is going to hike the Grouse Grind.
  • Thom, who just participated in the North Shore Triathalon, is going to train.
  • Michael is going to go for a family bike ride

First birthday contest

Here’s another way to celebrate: We’re throwing a contest!

To enter, all you need to do is tell us your best idea for getting your kids active this summer.

Let us know in the comments below and you’ll be entered into a draw for a $75 outdoor activity prize pack.

Our first birthday contest is open until July 2, 2013. (Read the Rules and Regulations.)

How we’ll be celebrating Active for Life’s first birthday

34 responses to “Active for Life is one year old!

  1. In order to get my kids more active this summer, I’m going to try to help us all get a bit more sleep, feed everyone nutritious foods, and turn off all screens in the evening. This should ensure that we have the time and energy to get busy! Keep up the fantastic work – I look forward to this email every time and am always astounded at the amazing ideas!

  2. Turn off the TV – we have volcano which hooks up to the water hose and keeps the kids on their toes because you never know when it will “erupt” – lots of fun.

  3. When our two kids were still strapped in snugglies, we bought a second, smaller canoe. This is the year – Mom and kid in one, Dad and kid in the other!

  4. Duck tape a skateboard board (no wheels) to shoes and have the kids jump on the backyard trampoline with it. Trains balance, coordination and comfort on a board for wakeboarding, skateboarding, surfing, kitesurfing and snowboarding.

  5. We started carrying our bikes in the back of the truck- we’ve used them 3 days in a row – just b/c we had an extra few moments and could grab them while waiting at grandma’s house or after supper ended early!

  6. My daughter is just 9 months, but since about 5 months, she was very eager to get moving. She is a quick crawler, and stands up on her own. She is not able to be too involved in activities as yet, but she sure keeps Mommy active by chasing after her.

    With the nicer weather, it is great for the kids to get outside and enjoy the longer days of sunshine and not be all bundled up in thick clothing.

  7. My best idea for getting my son active this summer is to do everything with him, and let him see me do it too – regardless of the weather. If it’s raining, we wear raincoats and hop, jump and run in puddles, if it’s sunny and hot we wear sunscreen and hats and bring out the slip and slides. Don’t allow any excuses when it comes to being active – because there isn’t any. Also, just play have fun and laugh!

  8. My daughter loves to dance, do cartwheels, and stretch on a daily basis. My husband loves to ride his bike. And I get great satisfaction from taking our dogs for longs walks.

  9. My family was one of the “Healthy Family Challenge” families for Today’s Parent so being active is at the front of our minds right now. We’ve been playing outside as a family a ton. Some of my favorite outdoor activities with the kids are:

    -Taking a walk each night after dinner
    -Gardening as a family (we have a great vegetable garden going)
    -Taking swimming lessons at the outdoor pool
    -Living life with the motto: Go Play Outside!

  10. We have a great big garden outside this summer. So while I’m weeding we always bring, balls and outside toys to play with and there’s a stream that they can run and splash in.

  11. We use the trampoline a lot in summer as well as go on beach trail walks and forest hikes. We do a little swimming and bicycling as well.

  12. I just finished building a beautiful new wooden playset in the backyard. It took me 5 days, but hopefully this will get the kids spending lots of time exercising and playing out there this summer!

  13. Honestly just being outside anywhere keeps them active. I find being in the house everyone is more likely to want to watch TV or even just lay around but even just “sitting around” outside usually means getting up more, exploring and looking around. PLUS it’s easy to do so many more activities. Bust out the bike, the balls…go swimming. Tag you’re it!

  14. Every day someone in the family gets to pick where we are going, to the park, mall waterfront…..where ever but we have to walk there and back.

  15. My best idea to get kids active in the summer is to be active yourself! 🙂 Daily walks are great! My 4 year old loves going on walks with me. Playing at the park is also a great way to get them out, climbing and being active.

  16. Our street has lots of kids, so when one of them goes outside to play, they all do. The best way to keep them all active is to have them invent their own game – it keeps them busy playing it for days.

  17. It’s easy to keep your kids active, just play with them, Keeps me active also. Make the time to do it, they grow up way to fast

  18. We love to just get outside, have water balloon fights, play soccer, take hikes together and explore to see if we can find different things, bike rides, go to the playground,swimming anything that requires us to be active, the kids love it!!!

  19. We started taking our kids geocaching – they love it and it’s a great way to spend time together outside exploring.

  20. We sign up our kids for fun races.This summer we are hiking mountains.We have hiked Tunnel mountain in Banff Albert canada.The kids had raced to the top and who reachs the top first gets to blow the first bubble.My husband and I come up with a family day trip with our kids every weekend that gets us out and moving our bodies in a fun way.

  21. It isn’t hard to get my son outside and active. All I have to do is open the door! He loves playing outside. I try to take him to the park or other places to keep it fun and interesting!

  22. We shut the cable off during the summer months. My kids LOVE dong 5K races. I try to register them in at least one a month.

  23. Our car always has a big bag of sand toys, sunscreen, and hats packed in the trunk all summer long! If I have to take the kids out for errands at any time during the summertime, I always allow time for an “impromptu” stop at a park. Many times we’ll leave home with swimsuits and towels too, in case we plan or chance upon a sprinkler park. We are outdoors every sunny day of the summer, whether on bikes, at the beach, kicking around a ball, or playing in the playgrounds and splashpads. They key in my mind, is always making time to be active, and encouraging it by always being ready for it yourself. We also just registered the kids for outdoor swimming classes for 4 weeks every day this summer. And of course, the pool is next to an awesome little sprinkler park!

    By the way, I wish there were a “Like” button for all of the great comments and suggestions above! 🙂

  24. We make everything a ‘hunt’, ‘adventure or a ‘challenge’. The kids love ‘hunting’ for wild strawberries and raspberries along the walking trails. We have tree climbing and rock climbing ‘adventures’ which usually involve a hike or ride to get there. And, for the sporty stuff (of which there is a lot) the ‘challenge’ is always to do one more than last time (as long as they’re still having fun)… works for running, passing and catching, push-ups, up and down the slide…just name it:)

  25. One of the easiest ways that we stay active in the summer is to park the vehicle. Unless we have to carry a lot of equipment or bags, we try to walk and bike to most of our summer activities.

  26. I think the most important thing when trying to get your kids to play outside is to play WITH them! You can kick around a soccer ball, run around the field playing tag, hit up the swing set or go for a swim at a community pool or lake. Whatever it is that is fun for your kids at any age, be sure to lead by example and be active with them! It’s fun for everyone and ensures your are showing them how fun it is at any age to get outside and have fun!

  27. The key to getting my 5 year old daughter active this summer is our newly purchased “Weehoo”. For those of you who don’t know what a Weehoo is, it’s a recumbent bicycle trailer for kids! My daughter and I intend to make trips down the Ottawa Canal to Mooney’s Bay beach or up to Meech Lake in the Gatineaus to go for a swim and picnic. We also plan to use it to visit all the great festivals in Ottawa like Canada Day, the Dragon boat festival, Westfest and more! Summer for us is all about being active together all around the city. That is why all structured sports classes are put on hold for July and August! Summer time WEE-HOO!

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