Staying active during quarantine and social distancing is tough. Video games and screens are an easy source of entertainment, but it's especially important for kids to get in physical activity. According to the CDC, regular exercise can help children and adolescents build strong bones and muscles, lower risk of developing heart disease, and reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression. Kids should aim to get 60 minutes of exercise per day, but it can be hard to meet that goal without recess, organized sports, and gym class.
We have aggregated the following articles, which include great ways for you and your kids to get moving and have fun while stuck at home.
This article by a physical therapy practice in Connecticut details a few great physical activities for you to do with your children during these times. As a parent, you could:
Build an obstacle course! Use household items such as pillows and cardboard boxes to construct a custom course for your children to play through. Bonus points if you have them design the course; it teaches them design concepts!
Have a dance party! Play some of your child’s favorite tunes and let them rock out!
And as a bonus, try out some new recipes! Cooking and baking with your children can teach them super important life skills and some science and math if you so choose.
These articles by Playworks and Today's Parent have more simple games that utilize household objects, like hallway soccer with a soft ball, balloon volleyball, or playing basketball with a laundry basket and a pair of socks. Other suggestions include directing your child on an imaginative adventure through the jungle as they run, skip, and crawl in place, or creating a "laser maze" with yarn for your kids to jump through.
Lastly, this article from Wellspan Health has games and exercises that can be done without extra materials. One game involves challenging kids to foot races while carrying household items or with specific rules. Playing games like freeze dancing and yoga is also a great way to stay active. All these games are designed to get everyone up and moving.
DIY: Staying Active at Home
Elizabeth Doss '24, Amiya Mandapati '24, Alex Pralea '24