5 Benefits to Exercising as a Family & How to Get Started
It’s officially summertime, which means school’s out, the kids are home, and you need ideas for how to keep everyone active and occupied. Getting kids excited about spending time outside (and away from their phones) can be tough. Fortunately, there are tons of fun, affordable ways to enjoy regular exercise with your kiddos this summer. Learn about the benefits of family fitness and how you can get started.
Why Family Fitness Is Important to a Healthy Lifestyle
Sharing in family exercise is the cornerstone of a healthy lifestyle since these habits support the physical and mental well-being of both you and your kiddos. By focusing on physical activity (and nutritious foods), you can create fun family memories and ensure a healthier, more well-rounded summer for your entire home team.
5 Benefits of Exercising as a Family
There are so many benefits of family fitness! However, there are a few perks that seem to outshine the rest. Among the top benefits of exercising as a family is its ability to encourage teamwork, strengthen family bonds, teach goal-setting, promote healthy habits, and boost self-confidence.
1. Encourages Teamwork
When you make family fitness a priority, you are likewise encouraging teamwork between siblings and within parent-child relationships. Family exercise requires communication and collaboration. From choosing an activity to selecting partners, you’ll need to use teamwork at every step. While these skills can be taught in a classroom, they’re more likely to become a lifelong practice if they’re backed up at home, too.
2. Strengthens Family Bonds
Regular exercise alongside your kids can strengthen family bonds in a big way since you’ll be working together towards the same outcome (like scoring the most points or completing a challenging hike). These are the sort of experiences that really deepen your relationships and form lasting memories with your favorite crew. In addition, physical activity has a way of bringing about more conversation and connection than watching movies or playing video games.
3. Teaches Goal Setting
Doing an activity as a family involves working towards a common goal, which can teach your kids about the importance (and satisfaction) of goal setting. For example, your family members might aim for 5,000 steps a day or commit to three virtual yoga classes each week. Alternatively, your child might set an individual goal to run a 10-minute mile by the end of summer, giving them a clear outcome and timeline to strive for.
4. Promotes Healthy Habits
Exercise has countless health benefits for children’s brains and bodies, from greater heart health and improved mobility to better sleep and reduced stress. And by exercising as a family, you’re serving as a role model for building these healthy habits.
When your kids watch you prioritize your wellbeing, it’s sure to influence their own habits in turn. Essentially, you can create family traditions that’ll positively impact your kids well into adulthood.
5. Increases Self-Confidence
Getting a boost of self-confidence in our most formative years can leave an impression that lasts a lifetime. Luckily, family fitness does exactly that by providing children with positive experiences that affirm their abilities and achievements.
Similarly, children often derive a sense of ownership and enjoyment from participating in the same activities as their parents; this can increase their self-esteem and is also likely to lessen feelings of anxiety.
Ways to Incorporate Family Fitness into Your Summer
Now that you understand the many benefits of exercising as a family, you might be curious about how to start exercising with your loved ones. Here are a few practical ways to spend time with your family while also scoring some major fitness points.
- A great money-free option is going to a public playground. Your children can get in a little cardio while swinging on the monkey bars, pushing the merry-go-round, climbing the jungle gym, or playing a competitive game of tag.
- Spend an afternoon playing classic outdoor games such as hula hooping, jumping rope, hopscotch, hide and seek, kickball, or even a few rounds of tag.
- You can hop on your bikes and take a trip to the library, grocery store, or a nearby park.
- Make it a habit to go for family walks in the evening after dinnertime. If you have younger kids, they might want to alternate between walking and riding in the wagon.
- On rainy days, you can head over to the bowling alley or do fun exercises right in your living room — think dance party, yoga session, or Zumba class.
- In addition to swimming at the rec center or the public pool, you can try other water activities like canoeing, kayaking, tubing, or paddleboarding.
Get Outside with Help From Rent-A-Center
Ready to put your family sports ideas and activities to the test? Start by making sure that you have the right equipment. Rent-A-Center can be your number one source for family fitness, thanks to our amazing selection of bicycles, e-bikes, stationary bikes, and more. Shop online or in-person at Rent-A-Center, and discover how affordable good health (and family fun!) can be.