We all know that exercise is one of the best ways to stay healthy. Regular physical activity lowers blood pressure, helps you maintain a healthy weight, lowers cholesterol, boosts energy, and improves sleep. But exercise is also a great way to reduce any COVID-19 related stress and anxiety. One could also argue that regular exercise is especially important now that we are all quarantined at home watching Netflix for 16 hours a day – no judgment, and eating cereal for every meal – again, no judgment. The recommended amount of physical activity is 20-30 minutes 3-5 times a week. So, here are a few family-friendly tips on staying active during quarantine.
Ages 0-6 months:
Your newborn is still small and needs proper support so the best way to fit in exercise in this age range is to get outside and take a walk (avoiding close contact with other people). Whether you choose a stroller or a carrier, make sure your baby’s head is fully supported. As a bonus, babies who get fresh air and sunshine each day actually sleep better at night!
Ages 6 months-2 years:
Children in this age range love to crawl, climb, and be lifted so why not make that your exercise? Lift your little one over your head, do some squats, army crawl around the living room, you name it. Better yet? put on some tunes and let your little one lead you in a dance or two.
By this age, your little ones can follow small amounts of direction which means you can play games. Stick with games that have minimal instruction but maximum movement: tag and all variations thereof: (freeze tag, shadow tag, TV tag, etc.), kick the can, capture the flag, kickball, hopscotch, red light green light, Simon Says, and musical chairs.
5 and up:
By this time the sky really is the limit when it comes to exercising with your kiddos. Riding bikes, going on hikes, playing at the park, yoga, karate, or dance, playing sports like baseball, basketball or soccer…really anything that you and your children enjoy doing together.
We hope you’ve found these family-friendly tips on staying active during quarantine helpful. We think these strategies are a great way to show your little ones that exercise can be fun and don’t we all need a little more fun these days? Having your children join you in your workout routine can also lead to a stronger relationship between you as well. Imagine having 90 to 150 minutes of designated time each week to spend laughing and playing with your kiddos?
*As always, if you go out in public, be sure to follow social distancing guidelines to help slow the spread of COVID-19
Have fun. Stay safe.