The average American spends a fair amount of their day sitting. Studies show that most adults sit 7.7 hours per day with similar averages for kids, and this number has been consistently increasing over the past 15 years. For example, according to the President’s Council on Fitness, kids spend 7.5 hours each day in front of a form of a video screen.
As adults and kids become more sedentary, finding ways to remain active is essential. We recommend starting by going outside (focusing on outdoor exercises and activities). Below are five ways to get moving and have some fun in the process:
- Ride a Bike—Bicycling is just one of many great options among outdoor exercises for the entire family to take part in. Grab the family and go for a 30-45 minute bike ride around the neighborhood or local park. If you have young children, invest in a bicycle cart to attach on your bike so they can join in on the fun. Don’t forget to wear helmets!
- Play Games—Instead of spending family game night inside, take it outside with fun outdoor exercises like hide-and-seek (a bit adolescent, but a childhood favorite), bocce ball, or even frisbee. Ask your kids for ideas and consider competing against other families or neighbors in games such as kickball or softball or organize a neighborhood scavenger hunt!
- Take a Hike—Many communities offer a variety of walking paths and trails, including stroller-friendly greenways. Explore the options your community has to offer and consider taking a walk as a family once or twice a week for at least 30 minutes. This is a fun, inexpensive option to get exercise in the great outdoors.
- Join a Summer Workout Group—If you’re serious about getting more active but are tired of the same old gym workout, try a local workout group that offers fun outdoor exercises. Joining an outdoor yoga class can be soothing and relaxing because you get to listen to the beauty of nature. If yoga isn’t your thing, then try outdoor aerobics or fitness boot camps. Sign up for a weekly class so you can keep a consistent workout routine.
- Take a Dip in the Water—If a lake, pool or ocean is within a reasonable drive of your home, then consider taking a family day trip. Activity options include white water rafting, renting a kayak or canoe, and of course, swimming, which is excellent exercise. The family will have fun, be able stay cool in the summer heat, and best of all, get in some extra activity time. Just make sure to keep hydrated and bring your sunscreen!