Family Fitness: Most Popular Articles
Relay races are a great way to entertain a group of kids, indoors or out, with little to no advance prep. Plus they're adaptable to all kinds of party themes.
Gross motor skills: for preschoolers, learning them is an important part of healthy development. Try these fun physical activities to help build your child's skills (and muscles).
Learn the best healthy half-time snacks for kids, plus what to serve before and after a game to give young athletes the nutrients they need.
Make your holiday an active one with Easter party games that get guests hopping, hunting, rolling, relaying, and more. Here's how to egg them on.
Find adorable ride-on toys for little kids, from scooters to buggies to balance bikes.
Try setting up a treasure hunt game for a birthday party, special occasion (first or last day of school, for example), or just a rainy day. Older kids can also set up a treasure hunt for littler siblings or cousins.
Looking for the best sports for kids? Joining a team encourages your child to be active, practice teamwork, and learn new skills.
: Locomotor skills are a category of motor skills. They are a group of movements in which the feet move
These Michelle Obama quotes come from the First Lady's frequent speeches on behalf of Let's Move, her campaign to eliminate childhood obesity.
Kids may be naturally flexible, but they still benefit from stretching. Try this simple series of kids' stretching exercises after a sports practice or extended play session (just make sure muscles are warmed up first).
Bad weather doesn't have to mean boredom. Try these rainy day activities that encourage physical fitness and play; suitable for children of all ages.
Indoor party games that get kids moving are a boon for guests, hosts, and guests' parents too! These indoor party games require little to no equipment, just a little space and a lot of enthusiasm.
If you're ready to make the move from walking to running, but want a coach you can take along with you,
Outdoor activities for kids keep them busy and burning energy for hours. Try these 22 different suggestions for exercise and play outside.
Help kids burn off energy and excitement with party games that keep them active. These games work for birthdays and other events, indoors and out.
For kids with casts, sedentary play and even screen time can get old fast. With your doctor's OK, try these activities that allow for a little exercise, even with an arm or leg in a cast.
To play the 7-Up game, all you need is a smooth, flat surface and a bouncy ball, such as a tennis ball. Kids can even play 7-Up game alone.
Keep guests busy at your next kids' birthday party: Turn them loose outside, then gather them for these active, outdoor party games.
Find 9 hula hoop games, from the classic spinning challenge to other innovative ways to use the hoop both alone and with a group.
The classic game of Capture the Flag is a favorite at summer camps and in backyards. You need two to four teams of any size, and a different colored cloth to serve as a flag for each team.
When ordinary kickball games get boring, try an extra-ordinary variation. Kickball is easy to learn and play and so are these alternatives. All you need is a ball and some willing participants.
These 10 tips for kids' weight loss includes ways for parents to help overweight kids lose weight, improve nutrition and increase amount of physical activity. Recommends steps to encourage children to enjoy fitness and change a sedentary lifestyle.
A gross motor skills development timeline tells you when you can expect your child to crawl, walk, and run, and how to help build large motor skills and muscles.
Dealing with disappointment in sports is an opportunity for kids to learn character traits like resilience, determination, and good sportsmanship.
Find exciting riding toys for kids and tweens, from the latest Razor scooter to helmet covers that make safety more fun.
Use this swimming pool checklist to keep your pool bag stocked with essentials and ready for a trip to the pool at a moment's notice.
Grab some galoshes and get outside. There's lots you can do to play outdoors even on a rainy day. These ideas will get you started.
Outdoor toys keep kids busy and active on long summer days. Try these top picks for this summer's best outdoor toys.
Review and taste test of Wat-Aah! premium water designed especially for kids, with no artificial flavors and packaged in a BPA-free plastic bottle.
Call it game-day jitters or butterflies in the stomach--but sports anxiety isn't just for pros, or adults. Kids and teens can feel it too. Here's how to help kids who are worried about a sporting event, performance, or game.
Walking games are the best way to keep whines at bay during a hike or walk. Try these simple activities to help children pass the time on a family hike or when you walk to school or the playground.
Learn what manipulative skills are in relation to the body. Read about the different types and what they are able to do.
Competitive sports teams hold lots of appeal for kids, but is yours ready to take on the challenge? Ask yourself these questions before you sign up.
It's a challenge to find non-sedentary rainy day activities for teens and tweens. After all, they can no longer run and jump indoors like they did as toddlers (at least not without causing a big ruckus). Try these more practical rainy day activities to get teens moving inside.
Motivate kids to get moving with water play, water games, and water activities that require little to no equipment or set-up. Play in the backyard with a garden hose or wash the car. Visit a local fountain or creek.
Make kids' stretching a part of their regular, active routine. Just like adults, kids need to stretch their muscles - after sports or active play and specially during growth spurts.
Reading a book doesn't have to mean sitting still. These health and fitness books for kids inspire active play and movement, and teach kids about how to live healthfully.
With these active games for kids to play alone, kids get some of the physical activity they need every day without having to find a play partner.
: "Aerobic" (and "anaerobic" ), in exercise, most correctly refers to the intensity of physical activity,
Cooperative party games mean everyone plays, but no one loses. These noncompetitive games also help kids gets plenty of physical activity.
Get the latest facts and recommendations on physical activities and fitness for school-age children, both at home and at school. Find suggestions for sports and other physical activities, plus ways to encourage physical play and movement every day.
What kind of physical activity for preschoolers is most fun and effective? Find suggestions for active, healthy, skill-building play for little kids.
Starting a kids' running club is easy and very inexpensive, plus you can join in on the exercise yourself. Talk to other parents at your child's school and work together to start a club.
Baseball and its close cousin softball are all-American classics and enjoyed by thousands of kids. Is your child eager to play Little League or join another youth baseball team? Find out more about this sport.
These simple, fun, safe ideas help transform outdoor play into indoor games for kids! Boost physical activity and help kids practice sports skills too.
Got a child who'd rather draw pictures or string beads than play outside any day? While those fine motor skills activities are good for his brain and body, he needs large motor skills activities too (projects that get him really moving his arms, legs, and trunk). The good news is that you can use his creative passion to inspire active, muscle-building play. Try one of these projects that stretch both creative and large motor skills.
These active toys for toddlers and preschoolers encourage physical activity and movement. Many can be used indoors or outdoors and most appeal to both girls and boys.
Ready to teach your child how to ride a bike? Start by choosing from one of three popular methods: training wheels, an undersized balance bike, or a full-sized bike with a parent running alongside.
Stuff your child's stocking (or stock a birthday party goody bag) with an inexpensive active toy--like these small, low-cost goodies that promote exercise, fitness, and physical activity for kids of all ages.
Playing with balls helps kids build motor skills, plus it's fun. Find out about the best balls for kids at each age and stage, plus games to play with balls.
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For children with physical disabilities, sports can be a wonderful opportunity to build strength, learn new skills, and be a part of a community of athletes.
Teen fitness reduces stress, improves self-esteem, boosts academic performance, and helps kids manage their weight. Help yours get 60 minutes of exercise a day.
It's important for everyone in your family to get plenty of physical activity. But the lure of the couch can be strong. Sometimes, to make fitness fun for everyone, you need to kick it up a notch. Try one of these motivators.
Exercise with children by turning playtime into a workout. Learn to modify physical fitness activities for kids so that families can exercise together.
Kids swimming is a great workout and offers both an individual and team experience. Swimming is an important lifelong skill. Find the basics on this popular sport for kids, from costs to risks to finding a swim team or club in your area.
When kids watch too much TV they are at risk for some serious health problems. Try these strategies for your family to adopt a more active lifestyle.
Make healthy snacks for kids a priority--they're a big part of your child's daily diet. Use snacks to fuel his body without unnecessary sugar or fat.
Families can encourage and enjoy active play with these simple activities. Most cost little to nothing and can be done indoors or outside.
Use everyday household items to make inexpensive or free homemade fitness equipment for kids an adults. Suggests simple ways to make fitness equipment and ways to use it.
Swimming pool noodles are lightweight, inexpensive, and very versatile. Use the for all kinds of indoor and outdoor games and active play.
Find out how much water children should drink daily to stay healthy, as well as which beverages are best for them.
These guidelines for sportsmanship for kids will help your young athlete be a good team player. Every child who is involved in youth sports should be familiar with these 10 basic principles of sportsmanship.
: Repetitive stress injury is an injury caused by chronic stress, strain, or overuse on a body part,
If kids are clamoring for something to eat, fill them up with healthy protein snacks. Foods containing protein are more filling than starches and usually contain more nutrients. Try these ideas for healthy protein snacks.
Are you afraid your child is a quitter? It can be tough to hear him say he wants to quit a sports team. But he might actually have a good reason.
: Your target heart rate is 50% to 85% of your maximum heart rate. It is the level at which your heart
Use recyclables and household items to make your own kids fitness equipment. These low- to no-cost active toys are simple to create and fun to play with.
Pirates' Treasure is a variation on Capture the Flag that swaps beanbag "treasure" for colorful flags.
These active Halloween games are suitable for all ages and for large or small groups. These fun activities encourage physical activity and fun with a Halloween theme.
Sidewalk chalk is inexpensive and kids love it. Try these games and activities to get kids moving on your driveway, sidewalk, or playground.
The WingFlyer Z150 is a clever new ride-on that combines features of scooters, bicycles, and even elliptical trainers. It's suitable for kids, teens, and most adults and provides a fun, low-impact, and challenging workout.
Be ready for those after-school or in-the-car munchies: Stock up on healthy snacks to go. These packable, portable snacks provide good nutrition and a burst of energy for busy kids and parents.
Encourage active play with preschool outdoor toys, especially for young children. Help preschoolers enjoy outside play time with safe, fun, age-appropriate outdoor toys.
For many busy parents, the only way to fit in fitness is to exercise at home. Carve out 10 minutes three times a day to exercise at home and you will reap real health benefits.
Create or improve sports snacks by asking your child's league to institute a healthy snack policy, or even to ask parents not to bring snacks to share at all.
A diagnosis of childhood obesity can be devastating. But prevention is possible, and so is treatment. And healthier habits benefit the whole family.
For many kids, gymnastics has big appeal: Lots of running, jumping, and cool equipment to play on. Is kids gymnastics the right sport for your child? Get the facts on this youth sport, from how much it costs to how to find a team to what your child might learn.
No matter your age or ability, kickball will get you kicking, running, and laughing. It doesn't matter if you haven't played since you were a kid. Kickball rules are easy to learn and it's a perfect, active family game.
Is it ever too late to start a new sport? If your child doesn't choose a sport to specialize in at an early age, can ever succeed? Here's what to know if your child gets a late start in sports.
Blue Diamond Nut Thins are tasty rice crackers made a little more nutritious with the addition of healthy fat and protein from almonds, hazelnuts, and pecans.
There are lots of reasons kids don't like sports. Figure out the root of your child's dislike to revive or jump-start his interest in sports.
Suggests 12 active toys for school-age children for gifts. These toys encourage physical activity and movement for kids and include indoor/outdoor toys, sports gear, and multi-player games.
Ready to try kids football (American-style)? Find out if the classic fall sport of football is right for your child and your family. In addition to tackle football, kids can also choose non-contact or flag football.
Youth track and field appeals to kids because it's based on easy, fun, everyday activities: running, jumping, and throwing! Find out more about youth track and field events, costs, clubs, and training.
Gym child care can be a great way for parents of small children to manage a workout. But not all child care rooms are created alike. Ask questions and observe before you make a commitment or entrust your child to the gym's caregivers.
Whatever occasion you're shopping for--birthday, Christmas, Hanukkah, or just for fun--look for a toy that promotes active play. A new game or toy can inspire hours of healthy physical activity.
Kids' soccer is an ideal team sport for beginners, with lots of potential for learning, fitness, and development. Find the basics on this popular sport, from costs to risks to finding a program in your area.
Food Should Taste Good tortilla chips are just as tasty as traditional corn chips, but they contain more protein and fiber, plus nutrition-rich quinoa and flax seeds. These chips still contain fat and sodium, but no trans fats.
Help keep little muscles limber and strong with these activities and games that incorporate easy stretches for kids.
Defines diagnosis of child obesity. Explains how doctors determine whether children are overweight using BMI (body mass index) and other measurements and tests. Lists lifestyle questions a medical professional may ask to determine whether children are too sedentary or get sufficient physical activity and good nutrition.
Youth sports parents must balance kids' needs, family needs, finances, schedules, and more. It's worth it for the benefits youth sports provides, but parents need to be involved to help kids realize those advantages.
Exercise for kids is important, and it's critical to teach kids about being active early in life. Try these three easy activities together.
For your next family game night, try one of these board games for kids (and parents). Many of them will get you up and moving, and others teach important lessons about health, fitness, and nutrition. Some do both--and all are fun to play! Read a list of suggested board games for kids.
Children clamoring to get in on the dance fitness party? There are a bunch of options for Zumba for kids!
: Muscle memory is the process of learning and improving motor skills through practice and repetition.
Kids feel better and learn better when they fuel up with a nutritious meal, so healthy school lunches really matter. These guidelines will help you pack one your child will actually eat.
: MET stands for Metabolic Equivalent for Task . It is a unit used to compare the working metabolic rate
Up your family's produce intake by serving fruits and vegetables at snacktime. Try these suggestions for healthy snacks with fruit and vegetable ingredients.
To motivate your family to adopt a healthier lifestyle, create a fitness challenge to do together. Find step-by-step instructions for setting up your challenge and achieving your goal.
Ready to get more fit and active as a family? Great! Here are the hows, whys, and whens of getting started with a family fitness plan.
EA Sports Active 2 corrects the biggest problem I had with its predecessor, EA Sports Active, and adds many new, useful features too. If you like a customizable workout with lots of stat tracking, read my review and check out EA Sports Active 2.
Use this beach packing list to stock your tote bag for a family day trip to the beach. Includes sun safety essentials and fun items too.
Help your child build skills, strength and confidence in a sports summer camp program. This guide offers suggestions, advice, and resources for choosing a camp and preparing your child to attend.
Each year, the National Association for Physical Education and Sport develops a theme and a set of activities for teachers and their students to do during National Physical Education and Sport Week.
Win or lose, boost your child's self-esteem with supportive comments and questions after games, races, and other sporting events.
The Obama fitness routine is legendary. President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama family famously make fitness a priority.
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: Vigorous physical activity is intense exercise that requires more than 7 METs of effort. During vigorous
These indoor toys and games, for ages 3 to 8, get children up and moving. They include games, play mats, and even video games.
With kids starting soccer at 3 and swim team at 5, teaching sportsmanship is more important than ever. Forty million kids are playing youth sports today. This means a greater emphasis on winning, but also offers an opportunity to teach sportsmanship early and often. The best time to instill values is when kids are younger.
: Muscles are the tissues of the body that, when contracted, produce movement. They are made of long
Kids can suffer from many kinds of youth sports injuries, including sprains, broken bones, concussions, and heat stroke. Learn which youth sports cause the most injuries and how to prevent and treat the most common injuries.
: Carbohydrates are the most common source of food energy. Foods composed mainly of starches, sugar,
Races go off-road with cross country running, in which kids compete to run the fastest time on a natural terrain course. Cross country running can be a great fit for kids who like to run and love the outdoors.
Keep kids busy in warmer weather with outdoor play toys that encourage lots of physical activity. Selections include preschool outdoor toys, water play toys and ride-on toys.
Kids love them, but are trampolines safe? Find out what pediatricians recommend and what essential safety guidelines to follow.
Guide review of the an at-home yoga DVD, Shiva Rea's Daily Energy Vinyasa Flow Yoga DVD featuring seven 20-minute practices, plus five additional short segments to combine into longer practices.
For kids with autism, fitness activities can help improve motor skills, muscle tone, sensory integration, and social development. Find out what kind of physical activities are best for kids and teens on the autism spectrum.
Sharing physical play helps create family closeness as well as promoting good health. Learn how and why to play together as a family.
Sock tag is a game that's fun for a group, requires little equipment, and really gets kids moving. You can also play a variation called Dragon's Tail Tag.
The slam-bang sport of kids ice hockey isn't just for boys, or big kids either. Find the basics on this popular youth sport, from costs (yes, they can be high) to risks to finding a program in your area.
Keep kids cool, busy, and active on hot summer days with fun water toys. These work in the backyard, pool, lake, or ocean for lots of fun, wet, warm-weather play.
Before you have kids, you can try many workouts, and spend time lots of time pursuing your favorites. But once you're a parent, you need exercise that's meaningful and really worth your limited time. Consider these mom fitness options.
Choosing a preschool, daycare or other care setting means evaluating a lot of criteria. One of them should be: Does the child care center or school have a physical activity plan for its young children?
Strength training for kids, when done safely and with supervision, offers many benefits to growing bodies. Find out more about when kids can start strength training and how to make sure they strengthen muscles safely.
Make these top toys a part of your family's gift-giving this year. These picks include classic and new games, toys low-tech and high, and gear for outdoors and inside. They appeal to preschoolers, pre-teens, and parents alike.
Ice skate sharpening can be confusing (when? where? how often?), so here's a cheat sheet. If your child figure skates or plays ice hockey, be ready for the winter sports season with sharpened skates.
You can teach sportsmanship through role modeling, post-game and practice debriefing, and also through these books that appeal to kids from kindergarten on up to sixth grade. They tell tales of team play, winning, and losing that any child can relate to.
: Plyometric training is an intense, advanced form of exercise in which the muscles are first stretched,
Try these sneaky strategies to fit in fitness when you swear you have no time to work out. There are ways to increase your daily physical activity without changing your schedule too much.
: Body-mass index (BMI) is a person's weight in pounds divided by his height in inches squared, multiplied
During Screen-Free Week, families are encouraged to turn off all kinds of screens in favor of face-to-face and physical activities.
First Lady Michelle Obama's obesity awareness and prevention campaign, Let's Moveis her passion and her mission. For Mrs. Obama, obesity is a crisis, especially for children and families, and one that must be addressed aggressively.
Halloween candy is OK, in moderation. Try these strategies to keep kids from eating too much candy this year.
Children should start swim lessons when they are developmentally ready to learn to swim, although some evidence suggests that earlier swim lessons may help prevent drowning. Water readiness programs for toddlers and preschoolers can help prepare kids for swim lessons when they are older.
Group exercise classes can be a fun way for kids to work out, but when are they old enough to enroll? Learn about options for kids, tweens, and teens.
During puberty, boys may become more athletic thanks to added muscle and height. Even overweight boys may be inspired to exercise more.
The Great Food Race game prompts a family conversation about healthy eating and the importance of physical activity. Game play is simple to learn for kids five and up. Read a review of The Great Food Race game.
: Dietary fiber is found in plant-based foodsâit comes from the skin, stems, seeds, and leaf structures
Is your child interested in youth cheerleading? Do you have questions (like, is it a sport)? Find answers in this profile.
: These three terms describe the inter-related skills necessary to direct and execute movement. Motor
Read a review of Ultimate Kettlebell Workouts for Beginners, featuring three workouts from trainer Paul Katami. The DVD includes a tutorial and a workout focusing on core strength.
Ready for some night games? These flashlight activities are perfect for summer evenings, camping out, and sleepovers. Play many of them indoors or out!
In this outdoor ball game, teams try to get the ball to their goal line while also preventing the opposing team from doing the same. Stop and Go is a very active game that is easy to learn.
For tween girls, puberty can be a trying time, whether they develop earlier or later than their peers or right on schedule. Weight gain associated with puberty is normal, but can leave girls worried about their image.
Guide review of the popular fitness DVD, Jillian Michaels' 30-Day Shred. Michaels is a celebrity trainer who helps contestants on NBC's The Biggest Loser drop pounds fast. Here she translates those intense sessions into a short workout you can do at home: the 30-Day Shred.
Youth basketball can be played indoors or out, same-sex or coed, pick-up at the park or high-stakes in the gym. It can be fun, and a good workout for kids of all ages and abilities, no matter their height!
: Fats , along with protein and carbohydrates, are a source of food energy ( calories ). They are a combination
For daring kids who love the water and acrobatics too, consider youth diving, an elegant sport with a big wow factor.