I recently came across this article on Runner’s World that suggested women who run while pregnant tend to have more active kids. You may not have been a runner while pregnant, but there are plenty of other ways to encourage your children to be active.
One of the easiest ways to squeeze a workout in when you have kids is to do a workout with them. Though, to be honest, the term “easiest” is debatable. Often kids have no interest in cooperating.
I can’t tell you how many times I plan out this great Mommy & Me workout to only to find myself trying desperately not to take it personal when he doesn’t want to “play.”
So, while not all workouts with my toddler are successful, I have found a few that my toddler cannot resist participating in. Here are some fun workouts you can do with your toddler. You can exercise without even realizing it!
Workouts in Disguise: 5 Ways to Exercise With Your Toddler
1. Simon Says
Who says simon says can’t be a workout? You can easily turn this fun game into an awesome workout. Just make sure you do the moves with your toddler as opposed to just standing there dictating. Here are a few movements to try…
- Jump up and down like a monkey
- Jump like a frog
- Gallop like a horse
- Run like a cheetah
- Crawl like a bear
- Crawl like a baby
- Hop like a bunny
- Swim like a fish
2. Red light, green light
Toddlers love this game! It’s a great way to practice following directions, and a wonderful way to work out. Again, make sure you are participating too. It’s more fun that way, and your toddler will have a blast if you are actively participating too. Here are a few modifications to try…
- Mix it up! Try playing it while going backwards or shuffling from side to side. You can do other movements too like jumping jacks or squat jumps.
When’s the last time you played hopscotch? I forgot how much of a workout you get while playing this game! Bonus: it’s a great way to work on number sense.
4. Freeze Dance
Whenever we had a moment to spare or needed the children to get up and moving while I taught Kindergarten, we played freeze dance. All you need is some music. Toddlers just love this game. Your toddler is sure to get a kick out of you dancing right along with them.
5. Obstacle course
W has been taking this adorable introduction to sports class at our local YMCA. They try all different kinds of sports for about five minutes each. It exposes them to all different types of sports and keeps their attention at the same time. One of W’s favorite activities is the obstacle course. You can set up your own at home with whenever you have lying around.
- Hula hoops are great to jump into, but you can easily use pillows, blankets or rags.
- Here are some ideas on how to make your own backyard obstacle course from Simple Kids.
What are some of your favorite childhood games that you would love to play with your toddler?