[This is a guest post written by Mark Ryder, submitted and sponsored by vaam.com]
Children are naturally active. They want to run and hang on things and jump. Keeping them fit shouldn’t be a problem. But, many parents have demanding work schedules and a ton of chores at home and it is often easier to put on Netflix and let your kids watch some Thomas the Tank Engine quietly while you take care of things.
Ideally, you would have time each day to take your children outside and let them run free, but that isn’t possible for a lot of families. Low-income families, in particular, don’t have the luxury of taking the kids out for playtime. Often, parents aren’t home because of the amount of work they have to do to maintain a household. And, even if they were home, the neighborhood might not be safe for children to play in. Other families may have similar issues as well. And weather can also keep families inside.
There needs to be a compromise between sitting on the couch and running outside and that is finding ways to be active in the house. You don’t want your kids running through the house and screaming at the top of their lungs (which you know they will if they get excited), so you need to have specific activities for them to do. Try the following.
Little kids like to listen to music and they love to dance. Even if they are terrible dancers, they will hop and shimmy and get down. Plus, you only need a clear space and some music.
If you want to make things a bit more engaging, try playing freeze dance. When the music plays, everyone dances with all their energy. And, when someone stops the music, everyone freezes. This keeps children’s attention because they know the time to freeze will be coming up.
If you want to get your child doing actual dances, use YouTube to find tutorials. There are ballet warm-ups, tap dance lessons, and routines designed specifically for children. If you can, dance along with your child. Your involvement will make them feel special and give them a reason to keep going if they want to quit.
Tie some string between two chairs to make a “net” and use a blown-up balloon as the ball. Work with your child to keep it floating back and forth above the net. IF that gets boring, try hitting the ball with different body parts or moving back from the middle and running for the balloon.
You may have played crab soccer in elementary school PE classes, and if you did, you know it is a workout. Teach your kid how to walk like a crab. Their feet and their palms go on the floor and they lift their belly toward the ceiling. Then, they move their hand and feet to walk. You can set up a course for them to run if there’s room or time them moving down a hallway.
If they can’t quite get the hang of crab walking, have them get in crab position and see how long they can hold an item, like a stuffed toy or a ball, on their stomach before they collapse.
For more ideas on what to do with kids indoors, check out: Cheap and Easy Indoor Activites for the Energetic Children.
About the guest author of this post:
Mark Ryder is the proud father of a little boy and a writer. He is used to keeping his son active and occupied. Mark’s work is frequently featured on parenting sites. He also writes about addiction and its treatment especially about treating heroin addiction.