Top 5 Active Things To Do With Your Family
Top 5 (actually 6) Family based physical activities
After our last blog (Active Families) we were inspired to come up with some ideas for parents to get active with their children. We batted a few ideas between us all and this was what we came up with for a top 5, well, 6 because we couldn’t separate 1 from 3 of the activities so they all ended up in the list.
We would love to hear your thoughts on the list and feel free to share some of your tales of family physical fun too!
6 - WALK A DOG
Amongst our team of 6 PACK Leaders, we have a sum total of 4 dogs. Within our respective families and I am sure the majority of dog owners reading this will agree, dog walking is a job that falls upon an individual to do. If you don’t have a dog to walk, walk a friends dog, I am yet to meet a dog that would say no to walkies! Why can’t our family all go together? Why can’t we all grab a coat, a stick to fetch and the poo bags and take the dog for a walk as a family. We can walk and talk, take in some fresh air and give ourselves a chance to increase our steps for the day and my watch tells me I need to hit 10 000 steps a day!
5 - SWIMMING
A classic in terms of physical activity but possibly lesser taken advantage of because of things like an increase in the “importance” of body image or the less than clear schedules in your local centre BUT if you can get past that the swimming pool is a brilliant environment for some physical activity. Whether you can swim or not should not be a factor in going, having a splash around in the water is fun, you might be able to use some pool toys to play with your children, a simple game of catch can turn into a splashtastic game! Our local leisure centres are ran by LiveWire and have a great website with a comprehensive timetable for swimming pool access so if you are Warrington or just interested in when Warringtonians can swim follow the link below.
4 - TV BOOGIE
Imagine the scene. You’re sat watching TV…….with the kids….so…kids TV is what you’re probably watching. Paw Patrol theme tune comes on as it does every half an hour for the next 3 years. Crank the tv volume up nice and loud and have a big dance with the kids, make some shapes, jump up and down, two step, Macarena, dealers choice really but BOOGIE DOWN! The theme tune may only last for 30 seconds but in that time the families heart rate will increased from the movement and if you do that at the start of each show and some choice advert jingles too then you have yourself a fun family activity moment to break up the chilled out time. If you was feeling extra active this Autumn/Winter…..X Factor is full of BOOGIE DOWN opportunities!
3 – NATURE TRAIL
This is something that we at home have recently started to do. Its good fun, we pick a big National Trust park or a forest. Grab our wellies, water proofs and pack a lunch and go on an adventure. When you are there you will find paths or different routes to follow, being amongst nature is a great feeling - huge, old trees, wildlife (who doesn’t love a squirrel!) and fresh air! The walk can last as long as you would like it to, along the way you could maybe make a den, we’ve even made a game out of looking for the biggest stick! Open up that pack lunch at a picnic table or even go native and find somewhere to sit on the floor. Another great activity to get involved with is to do a Treasure Hunt type of activity, make a list (before the trip) of things to try to find along your walk so that now the children have their heads up (or down) and eyes peeled looking for a spikey leaf, a red berry, a squirrel or even The Gruffalo, yes REALLY! In the North West we are fortunate enough to have the lovely Delamere Forest, they have Gruffalo Spotter Trails, this involves an app on a tablet or phone (kids love using a screen right?) and they will get to find the mouse, fox, owl, snake and maybe even he who has terrible tusks, and terrible claws, and terrible teeth in his terrible jaws! Follow the link below to find more information on the Gruffalo Spotter Trail.
2 – RUN & JUMP AROUND!
There has been a rapid growth of trampoline parks, 2 of our PACK Leaders have worked at a trampoline centre and another 2 of us have visited a few of them and they are very fun! You can do as little or as much as you like but we guarantee your children will do as much as possible because it is so much fun to jump around or into the foam pit! As well as trampoline parks every area has a local soft play centre. When you are at these kind of centres, parents, GET INVOLVED, go climb, jump and explore with your children if it is safe to. It is tempting to sit down and let your children have fun but these centres are a perfect opportunity to create an active family moment. I know so many adults who wish there was a play centre for adults but I have never seen a sign warning adults of the play area, get down that slide, climb up frame and have fun with your children people:) A few soft play centres you may want to check out are below, I hear they have some great multi-sports sessions through the week too!
www.prendoolys.co.uk (Newton-le-Willows WA12 9AS)
www.playdayscafe.co.uk (St. Helens WA10 1TZ)
www.treetopsplay.co.uk (Golborne WA3 3PY)
www.letlooseplay.co.uk (Stockport SK7 5DP)
1-– The WHO (Whole House Olympics)
We had some fun creating this one, The WHO can be each individual being their own team or you can pair up a parent with child(ren) too. Create a number of chores and utilise them as events to compete in. We’ll list a few examples now for The WHO events;
- Bedroom Tidy (points scored for quickest AND best jobs)
- Wipe Down (points scored for number of surfaces cleaned and points deducted for dirty spots)
- Window Clean (Parent sprays OR wipes and child does the other job)
With a little bit of creativity you can turn any job into an event to engage with your family together and hey! Now you have a clean house….first one to make mummy a brew wins!
We had some fun coming up with some of these and less fun not agreeing over what activities should make the top 5 but we hope you see something here that inspires you to get active WITH your little ones.
Be the example you want your children to follow.
Make exercise part of your families life.
Don’t let exercise be a stranger.
If you and your family try out anything on (or not on) this list we would love to see some pictures of your active family, find us on social media and show us how you get on. Good luck and have FUN!