During this time of year, it may seem impossible to keep kids as active as they are in the summer. But it’s completely possible to find ways for kids to let their wiggles out indoors!

Keep children active provides significant benefits, both to you and to them.  The CDC recommends that children get at least 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous activity a day!  Children who spend more time engaged in physical activity tend to hit their gross motor milestones faster, have an easier time sleeping through the night, and have more regulated emotional states.  Starting your kids off with healthy exercise habits will boost their heart health, strengthen their bones, help their GI and endocrine systems work properly, and improve their coordination, amongst other benefits.

So how do you do it?  Below is a list of ideas you could try, but the sky is the limit.  Take a visit to your local dollar store and see what you can come up with.  Successful activities should result in your kiddo breathing heavier, getting some color in their cheeks, or even sweating a little.

  • Indoor Activity Ideas:
    Hide and Seek – take 5-6 of your toddler’s favorite toys and hide them in plain sight around the room.  Challenge them to find them all!  You can time them to encourage running or fast crawling.
  • Balloon Keep Up – inflate a balloon and toss it into the air.  See how long you can keep it from touching the floor!  *Please remember all children should be supervised during this activity, as popped balloons can be a choking hazard.
  • Dance Off – Find a good children’s song and create a silly dance!  Find a fun song that they like that includes big body movements.  Father Abraham, Head Shoulders Knees and Toes, The Itsy Bitsy Spider, The Noble Duke of York, and Sammy are good options.  Try and encourage your little one to make the biggest motions they possibly can.
  • Play Catch – throw or roll a ball back and forth.  Occasionally miss with a silly “whoops” and make your little one get up and bring it back to the game.

Happy playing!