At-home fitness with your family

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by Jessica Small, Denton County Extension Agent

During this time while many are at home due to COVID-19, we must find ways to keep active. Although gyms are closed and most cities are now “Shelter in Place,” there are still plenty of options to get a little physical activity.

Physical activity is great because it promotes a healthy lifestyle and can be fun! It also helps you sleep better, reduce risks of chronic diseases and much more. You can see more benefits of physical activity here.

I wanted to provide you with a variety of indoor physical activities that you can do as a family. The good news is, they are simple and equipment is optional, not mandatory. The overall goal is to move throughout your day while stuck at home. Here are some suggestions on how to get in some physical activity each day:

Create exercise stations as a family – you can have 4-5 stations that each have an exercise. Have the kids choose the exercise for each station or everyone could take turns. Some examples could be: jumping jacks, sit-ups, frog jumps, squats. This can be modified to fit your family and you can choose any exercise you’d like.

Do an exercise workout – YouTube has tons of great workout videos that are FREE. There are also different types of workouts such as, circuit training, high intensity, yoga, chair exercises, Zumba, and lots more! I highly recommend YouTube! There’s something for every age group.

Let’s Dance! Dancing is a great way to move. Put on your favorite artist or music genre and enjoy! Be sure there is plenty of space for you and the family to dance around to avoid bumping into one another.

Walking around – This one is self-explanatory. However, to switch things up a bit, perhaps walking when you are watching a TV Show. For example, walk around your house during commercial breaks. This helps loosen the muscles, especially if you’ve been sitting awhile. If you have stairs in your house, walk up and down them 2-3 times before sitting back down.

Bottle or Can lifting– If you want to do more of a resistance training, try using things you may find in your pantry. Keep in mind, nothing to extraneous. Just something that adds a little weight. This helps us build our strength. Canned goods or small (filled) water bottles would be a good item to use to do bicep curls or shoulder press.

To see more ideas of ways to incorporate physical activity, I encourage you to visit this website. They provide a variety of activities for the family (including your pets too!). Remember to stay active as much as you can. Let’s Move!

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