I took every kid’s favorite holiday activity and turned it into a game. Have a trick or treat pumpkin basket filled with index cards with different exercises on them, have the child run to the basket and pick out a card/game to play. You and your children can come up with different movements/exercises ( a.k.a ninja turtle punches, jumping, sit-ups, push-ups, bear walks etc.) The game continues until you are all out of cards.
Most importantly they are having fun while doing activities that require mobility, balance, power, strength, and endurance. Keep this in mind when coming up with activities.
Here are a couple of examples of fun movements for you to do with your family anytime.
Spider Man Jumps (Cone Jumps)
Set up two cones or any kind of safe marker approximately 5 feet apart and the object is to jump back and forth between the cones ten times. The goal is that your child will be hopping back and forth between the cones like Spider-Man.
Jumping is an excellent cardio and plyometric exercise. It helps to build explosiveness and speed, and it works on elements of acceleration (take off phase) and deceleration (landing phase).
Bear Walks is a prime exercise that is used to develop whole body strength and coordination. In order to properly perform a Bear Walk, your hands are placed on the ground about 3 feet in front of you. Your buttocks are high in the air. You step forward with one of your hands, then step forward with the opposite foot. Step forward with the other hand and then the other foot.
Bear Walk exercises work well for increasing entire body strength because they use the principle of whole body movement: instead of isolating one body part, you are using all the muscles as a single unit. Children always have a blast with this exercise.
By Michael Shipper, A Youth Fitness Specialist and Ace Certified Trainer
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