10 tips for increasing your family’s fitness level

Family playing football

You can encourage your family to become fit by following these tips:

  • Limit how much time your children spend watching TV and playing video games. (And limit how much time you spend doing these activities, too.)
  • Don’t eat snacks or meals while watching TV. If possible, do some type of exercise while watching.
  • Schedule family fitness activities, such as biking, hiking or tennis.
  • When the weather is bad, try indoor exercise ideas such as jumping jacks or Simon Says.
  • Encourage your children to try individual sports, such as tennis or swimming, that can be done throughout life.
  • Make getting in shape a family commitment. Schedule time during the week to exercise together. Set exercise goals as a family to help everyone stick to the fitness plan.
  • If family members are of varying fitness levels, exercise at a level most comfortable for the slowest, least-fit person. Also, be sure to tailor exercise to your children’s ages. If you have a 4-year-old, play games a child of that age likes to play.
  • Plan a family fitness vacation once a year.
  • Join a family-oriented fitness club or the YMCA.
  • Unless you and your children are evenly matched, fitness activities shouldn’t involve adult-child competition. It’s better to just exercise together.
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