Staying fit with the family – Part 1

Tearing the family away from phones and screens to get them up and active can sometimes seem like an impossible task. Making it fun is essential for children and adults because if you make activity fun, it won’t feel like such hard work.

Here are a few ideas to try out when you next head out with your family. Remember to be creative with what you have. It’s all about jumpers for goal posts!

These can be adapted for all ages and fitness levels with a little bit of imagination.

Shuttle Runs

Great for cardio fitness. This can be very serious races or fun silly ideas to get you moving.

  • Decide how far you want to run then split your family into two teams. Have one group at each end.
  • The first person runs and tags the hand of the person at the other end. They run back and tag the next person. Keep going until everyone is back to their starting position.
  • Have a short recovery then repeat aim to beat your first time
  • Variations – run backwards, skip, jump, hop, sidestep or crawl the distance. Anything goes, just get moving!

Snake Run

This is great for cardio fitness and works on reaction skills

  • It can be done on the street or in grassy area.
  • Stand in a line, one behind each other, start jogging or walking. Person at the back of the line. moves to the front as fast as possible and leads the way.
  • Front person shouts SNAKE whenever they want, and the person at the back comes to the front.
  • This can be done on bikes if you are in a suitable off-road area to do this.

Cat & Mouse

This is great for cardio fitness, speed, coordination and reaction skills. There are three variations to this game.

  • Take two (preferably clean) socks per person or tea towels (or anything similar) and head into the garden or to a grassy area. You don’t need loads of space.  If in a public space, mark out an area with bags, jumpers or sticks.
  • Option one: everyone becomes a mouse and tucks two socks into their waist band, apart from one person who will be the cat.
  • The cat needs to get all the sock as quickly as possible. You can’t step outside of the marked space.
  • Option two: as above but half are cats and half are mice.
  • Option three: everyone has two socks. Game finishes once everyone has lost their socks. The winner is whoever has the most socks.

Animal Races

A fun activity working on cardio and fully body strength and flexibility.

  • Find a space and decide how far the racetrack is.
  • Work through the alphabet starting with A and ask your kids to pick an animal starting with this letter. For example, Antelope. Decide how this animal moves then head to the start line. For the more organised people you can take animal picture or write animals on a bit of paper and put them in a bag to do a luck dip.
  • The fastest person to the finish line moving like the chosen animal, wins.

Yes, sometimes you might look a bit silly but hey your having fun with your family who cares!