With the new school term under way, and it looking like the kids will be home schooled for some of it, it’s a good idea to think about how to keep them healthy, focused and happy while at home with exercise.
Kids need a lot of exercise and movement to help with their high energy levels, and regular breaks to help with their learning. Regular exercise breaks during the day help them to re-focus on their learning, and can be great stress relief for kids – and adults!
I asked a few of my teacher friends what they recommend to break up learning time for an exercise stop. The answer: intersperse 45 minutes of learning with 15 minutes of exercise, and mix it up between directed (your choice) and letting the kids have a say.
Here are four 15-minute sessions for you to try with the kids, as well as some exercises and games to have a go at!
- 5 mins jog/run/brisk walk
- 30 secs seated hamstring single leg stretch, 2 x each leg
- 2 mins back rolls, knees move left to right
- 30 secs quad stretch: lying on your side, grab your ankle and pull heel towards your bottom, 2 x each leg
- 4 x 30 secs hanging stretch: hang from monkey bars (or something similar)
- 2 mins breathing, focusing on each breath and reflecting
Do each of the following for 2 minutes:
- Backyard shuttle runs (5-10m) – time these!
- Single leg hopping, 20 each leg then switch
- Ball bouncing, 20 each hand then switch
- 1 minute rest!
- Backyard shuttle runs – try and beat your first time!
- 2 mins plank (start smaller and build up to the 2 mins)
- 2 mins push-ups (on knees, make sure the form is correct!)
- 2 mins squats
- 2 mins dips
- 2 mins sit-ups (fingers to knees)
- 10 x jumps (as high as they can!)
- 2 mins standing overhead punches
- 1 min push-up hold
Fun and games!
- Hide and find: hide 5-10 different objects in the yard, each one with an exercise on it, as they find it they do the exercise alongside you.
- Ball challenge: have two people bounce a ball each, then when the whistle blows, throw them to each other and catch. Whenever you drop the ball, you have to do a push-up and then start the challenge again.
- Sit and chat about fun activities to try!
Other activity ideas:
- Kick to kick
- Table tennis
- Relay runs
- Walk and talk
- Backyard tennis