Keeping Kids Active on Winter Holidays

A few ideas for the winter holiday period

School holidays can be trying for any parent but the winter holidays really are next level. If it is raining out, why not try some of these indoor activities to keep the boredom at bay and more importantly, keep your kids moving? Or why not let the kids use the garage or carport as a play space? Most importantly, remember to be a positive role model for your kids. Get out there and be active yourself and enjoy having quality, active family time.

Kids’ classes   Sign the kids up for a group class, gymnastics, martial arts, dancing, badminton or go to an indoor pool and start swimming. There really are a heap of these to choose from, some can be crazy expensive but community centres often run really reasonable programs at really reasonable prices.

Dance   Get the kids to put on their favourite music, crank it up and dance around the room. Dance parties are an awesome way to have fun and wear them out a little.

Invent indoor adventures   Make huts or forts in their room and imagine you are out camping. Act out all the adventures that you will have. Go on nature walks around the house and imagine all the amazing wildlife you can see. Let them pick the destination.

Have a family step competition   See who can get the most steps in a week with a family pedometer competition, great for those older kids. Make sure the prize is good to get maximum buy-in but also try to make it something that encourages healthy behaviours like a new pair of trainers or an indoor trampoline pass.

Hopscotch   Using chalk or masking tape, mark out a hopscotch grid on the garage or carport floor and using a rock or button to throw on the square, then hop through the grid missing the square with the marker on the way to the top and pick it up on the way back down the hopscotch grid.

Indoor mini golf competition   Get some plastic golf clubs from a toy shop and set up a course using cups for the holes and house hold items as obstacles. This one never gets old, you can literally invent a new course everyday.

Scavenger hunt   Write a list of items the kids need to find, or tasks they need to complete around the house within a certain time frame. The winning team are the ones who ticked off the most items on the list. With older kids this can be taken to the local park or creek and you can really cover some distance. With a bit of thought clues can be made to be a little cryptic or puzzling and when tied into funny stories that have become part of your family folklore, they can really make this a great family experience.

Hula hoop   Not only can you use the hula hoop in the traditional way swinging it around your waist, you can use it in relay races or running beside it keeping it rolling.

Family walks   It’s cold and wet but once you’re out there it can be a really refreshing change from being cooped up inside, so bundle up and get out and about as a family. Walk together and see if the kids can name as many plants or birds as possible.

Rope jump   Hold on to the end of a rope and get each child to stand around you in a circle, just a little closer than the length of the rope. Swing the rope around low and encourage the children to jump over it every time it comes past them.

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