Fun Indoor Activities for Kids To Keep Them Healthy

The year 2020 ushered in abrupt unforeseen changes to our lifestyle as the COVID-19 pandemic brought waves of lockdowns and quarantines. The pandemic is still not over yet. There is a lot of uncertainty about what the new normal will be in the upcoming months. The kids have already entered their second year of disrupted schooling this year. And online learning has dramatically increased the amount of time they spend on digital devices every day. With social distancing measures in place, they miss out on opportunities to play outdoors and be active. The coronavirus pandemic has forced children to adapt to a more sedentary lifestyle. To increase their involvement in physical activity, here is looking at 10 Fun Indoor Activities for Kids To Keep Them Healthy and Engaged.

Importance of Physical Activity in Kids

Parents need to recognize that lack of physical activity and too much screen time may negatively impact both children’s physical and mental health. It could lead to poor brain and cognitive development, decreased attention span, and increased sleep disruption in the short term. Long-term consequences may include childhood obesity and the health conditions like cardiovascular diseases, type 2 diabetes, and cancer.

Parents should also make an effort to maintain their children’s daily routine for a healthier lifestyle. It’s essential to limit the amount of time spent in sedentary activities every day to allow them to engage in physical activities. 

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that kids aged 2 to 5 years play several times each day actively. Older kids and teens should get at least 60 minutes or more of moderate to vigorous exercise every day.

Exercise Selection: Choosing the Right Type of Exercise and Fun Indoor Activities for Kids

Regular exercise promotes healthy growth, develops essential motor skills, and boosts self-esteem.

Structured and Unstructured activities are two essential sources of exercise for children. Unstructured activities are unplanned play-based activities. They let your child use his imagination and move at his own pace. Play-based activities are essential for children of all ages, especially those under five years old.

Structured activities are adult-led activities, and they are more organized. Adult-led activities are essential for children of all ages but especially for kids aged 6- to 12- years old.

First up, click here to know how much exercise your kid needs in a day

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends structured activities to be a combination of three types of exercises:

1. Aerobic or Cardio Exercise

2. Muscle-Strengthening Exercise

3. Bone-Strengthening Exercise

Best examples of aerobic exercises are walking upstairs, indoor ball games, and dancing.

Perfect examples of bone-strengthening exercises are yoga, skipping or jumping rope, squats, and lunges.

Examples of muscle-strengthening exercises are bear crawls, jumping jacks, push-ups, sit-ups, and planks.

10 Fun Indoor Activities for Kids

Walking Upstairs

Indoor ball games

Dancing

Yoga

Skipping or Jumping rope

Bear Crawl Races

Jumping Jacks

Squats and Lunges

Push-Ups and Sit-Ups

Planks

Most kids won’t mind a daily dose of exercise as long as it’s fun. Children naturally tend to be active, and parents need to take advantage of this to add fitness to their routine.

Get the entire family involved. It is a great way to develop an exercise routine and a fun way to spend time together.

Below are some ideas for indoor activities or exercise for kids:

Aerobic Exercises:

  • Walking Upstairs
Fun Indoor Activities for Kids climbing stairs

Walking up and down the stairs at home or in the apartment building is best to clock in aerobic exercise. It boosts your cardiovascular health and also helps in building leg strength.

Ask your kid to walk down and up for 10-15 minutes. You can even join him and encourage him to develop a habit of taking the stairs instead of an elevator.

  • Indoor ball games

Playing ball games indoors can be one of the most fun indoor activities for kids. They help build balance skills and coordination practice.

Some examples of indoor ball games are as follows:

  • Tossing balls into buckets or laundry baskets
  • Hitting balls at a target with a household object
  • Catching balls with a bowl
  • Throwing, rolling or kicking a ball against the wall
  • Dancing
Fun Indoor Activities for Kids dancing

Dancing is easy and a great way to exercise, and it’s fun for all ages. In dance, you achieve aerobic exercise by moving, jumping, and twirling. You can dance around the house to your child’s favorite tunes or run a simple search on YouTube for tutorial videos. Before you start, make sure to clear the space so that it’s easy for your child to sway around freely.

Bone-Strengthening Exercises:

  • Yoga

Yoga is a mindful exercise, and yoga poses can be a fun and simple way for kids to exercise. Regular yoga practice is very beneficial, and it can improve their balance and better alignment of the body. It also helps in relaxation and stress reduction.

Yoga is a weight-bearing exercise. It not only tones your muscles but also helps in strengthening your bones at the same time.

A few easy and fun yoga poses for kids to try are as follows:

  • Vajrasana (diamond pose)
  • Sukhasana (easy sitting pose)
  • Bhujangasana (cobra pose)
  • Balasana (child’s pose)
  • Utkatasana (chair pose)
  • Paschimottanasana (seated forward bend) 
  • Shavasana (corpse pose)

Try this fun sun salutation with your kids!

  • Skipping or Jumping rope
Fun Indoor Activities for Kids jumping rope

Skipping or jumping rope is an excellent weight-bearing exercise along with being the most fun indoor activities for kids. It can challenge skills such as balance and coordination. It also helps strengthen your bones and joints to stay in perfect shape.

Skipping is suitable for children of all age groups. It is an efficient way to burn excess calories, beneficial for obese kids.

Muscle-Strengthening Exercises:

  • Bear Crawl Races

The bear crawl is walking on all fours with your belly facing the floor. It can be an excellent whole-body exercise that challenges kids to use their limbs and core. A bear crawl also helps strengthen multiple muscles, including arms, shoulders, chest, back, abdomen, and legs. It also boosts endurance and improves total core stability.

  • Jumping Jacks

Jumping jacks, also known as a star jump, is an efficient total-body exercise, mainly used for warming up. It involves stretching arms and legs out to the side like a starfish while jumping. It helps build muscle strength, cardiovascular fitness, and stamina.

  • Squats and Lunges
Fun Indoor Activities for Kids squats

Squats and lunges are simple exercises that benefit the lower body. They help build leg strength, particularly the thighs. It also gives kids a good foundation for sports and fitness activities. These exercises also improve bone density in the hip and spine.

  • Push-Ups and Sit-Ups

Push-ups and sit-ups are the best exercises that work the core. They are performed in a prone position, lying horizontal and face down, raising and lowering the body using the arms. Sit-ups are performed by lying on the back and lifting the torso.

Performing push-ups and sit-ups daily will strengthen the muscles. They also improve posture, core, and upper body strength.

  • Plank

A plank is a modification of the push-up position. It targets the muscles in the abdomen and helps build core and upper-body strength. A combination of push-ups, sit-ups, and planks will strengthen your child’s upper body and core muscles in the abs and back.

Conclusion

Exercise and physical activities should be integrated into young children’s lives to create a foundation of movement and training that they will carry with them throughout their lives.

Children who meet a minimum of 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity every day have better physical, cognitive and mental health than those who lack movement behavior. Research also shows that inactive children are likely to become inactive adults.

Kids should have many chances to do various physical activities, sports, and games that fit their personality, ability, age, and interests. Through physical activities and exercise, kids learn about sportsmanship, setting goals, meeting challenges, teamwork, and the value of practice, putting them on a lifetime path to better health and fitness.

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