With the cold weather upon us, it is time to put some thought into keeping our families active and fit this winter. I have included some great winter activities that are both fun and healthy. If you use this information you may find that keeping fit is also a great way to tighten the family bond. Remember, your children’s life long fitness habits are developed in your home. Please take this responsibility seriously!
Outdoor activity:Cold weather should not prohibit your enjoyment of the outdoors. Consider the following exhilarating outdoor activities this winter:
- Skiing and Snowboarding are not only fun, but they also work most of the major muscles in the body. They are also a great way to challenge your balance and coordination. If you are new to these activities, I recommend you seek some professional lessons before you begin.
- Hiking is an outdoor activity that almost any one can participate in. Most family members, both young or old can enjoy a hike together. This activity is not only great for burning calories, but it also provides invaluable family bonding time.
Indoor Athletic Activities & Indoor Fitness: Indoor sports such as basketball and soccer are tremendous ways to keep moving when the weather prohibits. Organized sports benefit the participant in many ways. Along with offering an aerobic workout, they also help to build communication skills, muscle coordination, and muscle strength.
Martial Arts classes provide many benefits to the participants, including a great indoor workout. One of the most important benefits is the development of long term goal setting. One of the first lessons taught in martial arts classes is on focus and perseverance. Each participant begins as a white belt and sets their sights on becoming a black belt. Without focus and perseverance, this goal would not be met. These lessons carry over into all aspirations in life, whether they be fitness related or not.
Indoor Fitness Equipment: When you are not able to exercise outside and other athletic activities are not available, indoor fitness equipment is a great way to stay active. Weight training offers many benefits including increased strength and coordination. The use of a treadmill or an elliptical machine is a nice way to elevate your heart rate and burn calories.
Indoor Active Video Games: While video games are generally not considered a method of exercise, I must say there are some games that offer a very challenging workout. I have experienced games that require dancing, jumping, and even virtual kickboxing. If you do a little research before you buy a game, you will find that some games offer a great way to keep the family active and bond through fun. Believe me, there are games that are tough and worthwhile workouts.
I hope that this information proves beneficial in your quest to keep your family fit and unified this winter. Always try to pick activities that require family participation or family support. Remember, the family that plays together stays together.
Best of luck and stay warm!
Jim Bompensa has been a health club owner and manager, personal trainer, group fitness instructor, and nutrition specialist for the nearly 15 years. He is currently the owner/operator of Body Physics Fitness Center in Haddonfield, NJ. Jim has appeared and contributed on ABC and NBC in Philadelphia, PA as well as Designing Spaces on TLC.