Guidelines recommend that children get 60 minutes of physical fitness daily. That is hard to do when you are stuck at home with your kids all the time and they are not going to school! I have some fun activities that you can create for your children that get them up and moving and having fun at the same time.
Obstacle courses: Rearrange your furniture in your living room to create a challenging obstacle course for them to climb over and under. Set it up in the “Ninja Warrior” style and they will have hours of fun!
Jump rope: Pull out the jump rope and teach your youngster all the different rhymes that you use to jump to as a child. If you have more than one child, have jump rope contests to see who can jump the most in a one- or two-minute time frame.
Wheelbarrow race and crab walk: These activities are fun and work out your core muscles. Have races across the living room to see who is the fastest.
Animal races: Pretend like you are on Old MacDonald’s Farm and waddle like a duck, hop like a frog, meander like a cow, etc.
Balloons: Balloons are always great fun. See who can keep their balloon up in the air for the longest time. Play balloon volleyball or balloon tennis.
Dance party: Bring out music from different eras and have everyone dance. This is a great way to teach them about music and the dances of the times. You could even play musical chairs or freeze dance!
Carnival: Set up booths and turn your living room into a carnival. Have different games at each booth and prizes that the children can win. The prizes do not have to be store-bought. You could even make cookies or have bags of pretzels as prizes.
Scavenger hunt: Hold a scavenger hunt throughout the house. Whoever finds all the items first, wins!
Bowling in the hallway: Get empty bottles and set them up like pins at a bowling alley. Use any ball you have and roll the ball down the hall to knock over the “pins.”
Hopscotch: Put tape on your floor to mark out the hopscotch course and then practice jumping through it with your children.
Bedroom clean-up race: Set the timer for 15 minutes and see who can clean their room the fastest. If one finishes before the other, have them help their sibling out.
Tickle tag: Have your children run around the house. Chase them, and when you catch them it is time to be tickled. Do the opposite and let the children chase you and get a chance to tickle you in return.
Pillow fight: Grab your pillows and go for it. Before you start the fight, set up rules, such as no hitting people in the face.
Skating in socks: This works best if you have hardwood floors. Kids can skate around in their socks. They can play hockey or pretend they are figure skaters.
Bubbles: Bring out the tried-and-true bottle of bubbles that everyone loves. Let your children try to catch them or blow them out.
These are just a few examples of things that you can do with your children indoors. Now that the sun is shining and the snow is melting, it is also time to start going outside to ride bikes and go to the park. Remember to use social distancing and wear those face masks. Happy spring, everyone!
Adrian Kohrt is a family nutrition coordinator for Cooperative Extension Service, a part of the University of Alaska Fairbanks, working in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Agriculture. For questions, she can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or 907-474-7930.