Let’s Get Physical
Wondering what activities to do with your daughter so you both build a healthy and fun exercise habit that can last a lifetime?
Having fun while exercising is key to building the belief that physical activity is something to look forward to, not something to dread.
Here are 20 ways to get active with your daughter. I hope you get inspired!
1. Jumping Rope — You can get two jump ropes and have a competition as to who can jump the most times in a row. Make up a silly song as you jump. Try to synchronize your jumping. Get a long jump rope and if there is just two of you, tie one end to something and one person spins the rope while the other person jumps. With toddlers, just lay the rope on the ground and watch them jump back and forth over them.
2. Bike Riding — Start to use bicycling as a way to get from one place to another. Bring your bikes to a bike path and enjoy the day on your bicycle.
3. Hiking —Start with a short walk in the woods. These walks can be a great time for your daughter to share things that are rolling around in their minds. Choose a small local mountain to climb. Decide to climb all the mountains in the Northeast! For toddlers, walk around your yard or a park and discover flowers,etc. Let them lead the way.
4. Canoeing & Kayaking — Take a boat or two out to the lake or the river. Bring a picnic.
5. Swimming — In a pool, in a lake, in a river. Get your suits on and go for a dip. Choose a distance to go and reach your destination; 10 laps or to the dock. Play in the water. Play catch with a ball or a frisbee in the water. Dive down and retrieve weighted pool toys.
6. Bowling — Always a fun time, with bumpers or without. See who can make the best “after ball release” pose.
7. Dancing — Depending on the age of your daughter, have her choose the tunes and then let loose, move your body to the beat and work up a good sweat. Have a family dance party. Have a dance party with friends.
8. Playing Basketball — Shoot some hoops. How about a little one-on one?
9. Playing Tennis — Find or borrow some rackets and balls and go have a blast running around the court, chasing down balls. Get some basic lessons and practice, practice, practice.
10. Play Catch — Just go outside and play catch with mitts and a baseball or softball. Play catch with a tennis ball or a frisbee.
11. Kicking around a Soccer Ball — Practice tricks with your feet or while dribbling.
12. Playing Hopscotch —Remember that one? Still fun to draw the hopscotch board with chalk and teach your daughter how to play.
13. Roller Skating — Always fun. Use roller skates or inline skates and enjoy the music and crowd at an indoor rink, or take your skates to a bike path or park to enjoy skating in the outdoors.
14. Doing Martial Arts — Many martial arts schools offer family classes, where you can attend with your daughter. Help each other to learn invaluable skills while having fun
15. Walking & Jogging — Put on your running shoes and start to jog with your daughter. Start with alternating walking with jogging and build your strength and stamina.
16. Playground Fun — Playgrounds can offer great equipment for strengthening muscles. Play “Follow the Leader.”
17. Push-ups & Sit-ups — Anytime, anywhere. You don’t need any special equipment for these!
18. Skateboarding — for the brave and daring. Don’t forget your wrist guards and knee and elbow pads!
19. Rock-Climbing — Find a rock climbing wall to try out. Get good enough at it, to climb rocks out in nature.
20. Yoga — Sign up for a Yoga class together or learn and practice at home. How about a yoga and tea party for moms and daughters?
May this warmer weather bring you many beautiful days to get outside and enjoy getting active with your daughter!
[Photo credit: (cc) woodleywonderworks]
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Nancy has been empowering girls since 1985. She teaches self-defense, martial arts and life lessons at her studio in Northampton and beyond. Nancy is also a bodyworker, blogger, love of life and most importantly, a mom. You can read her latest blog posts at nancyrothenberg.com.