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Keeping active is good for the whole family. So even if you can’t get out and about, there are still lots of things you can do at home as a family to burn off some energy and keep everyone upbeat and healthy.

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Tips for staying active indoors

Tip #1: Screen time shenanigans

Screen time can be a useful tool in keeping active. There are lots of things online for children and parents. Here are just a few of our favourites:

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Tip #2: Obstacle course

Why not grab some bits and pieces around the house and create your own mini obstacle course? It doesn’t need to be fancy, just set out some things they can run around, jump over or throw. You could even get creative and make some medals for the winners.

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Tip #3: Slam dunk

Grab some bowls or cups and place them around the room, then get some balls to use – scrunch up some paper if you need to – and challenge your kid to get a ball into each cup. You can make it trickier by asking them to step further and further away from the bowls.

Mix it up a little by writing a letter on a piece of paper and placing it in each cup. Once the ball has landed in the cup the letter can be removed, the challenge is to get all the letters and make up the hidden word.

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Tip #4: Tall tower

Who can build the tallest tower? Find something stackable in your house: wooden blocks, Lego, cereal boxes or even your sofa cushions. Just let them take turns each to see who builds the tallest tower. See how high their imagination takes them.

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Tip #5: Balloon balls

The last thing you need to be doing is looking out for breakables when balls are flying round the house. Why not use balloons instead? Blow up a balloon and use it as a substitute for all ball activities. Can you header it back and forth? Or why not tie a bit of string to two chairs and have a game of house volleyball? There are endless ways to have fun with balloons indoors.

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Tip #6: Make a maze

If you have a hallway why not turn this into a maze? Using string, tape or items of clothing. Just tie things at different heights and challenge your kid to get through without touching anything.

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Tip #7: Circuits

Make your very own circuit class for your family. Take a few sheets of paper, write a different activity on each one and place them around the room. The idea is that everyone does the activity for a set amount of time, then you all move on to the next one.

Try to make the activity and times relevant to your family, and their ability. Tasks could be as simple as 5 jumps, 5 hops, 5 star jumps to 2 minutes of sit ups, 2 minutes of planking and 2 minutes of running on the spot.

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Tip #8: Animal races

Run like a cheetah, jump like a frog, waddle like a penguin or slither like a snake. Why not have fun taking turns at choosing an animal and deciding the action that goes along with this? To make this even more fun, why not make the noises of your animal – ribbit!

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Tip #9: Scavenger hunt

Hide items around your house for the kids to find. The more difficult you make it the more energy they will use up finding the items. Putting items at different heights can get little bodies jumping and squatting their way around the house in no time.

To make this even more fun, you could even try to leave clues to where things are hiding and offer a reward if they can find all the items in a given time. 

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Tip #10: Sticky web

Make a web of masking tape across a doorway and then challenge the kids to throw different items at it to see what stick. Can they guess what will stick and what won’t? A bonus exercise for them is picking up everything that falls to the floor and tidying it away.

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Tip #11: Clean up race

Set a timer and see if your kids can tidy away all their toys before the timer goes off. Something to get their heart rates up, and give you a helping hand too. Win – win.

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Tip #12: Dance, dance, dance

To lift everyone’s mood, put your favourite music on and dance, dance, dance!

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Kids always fighting?

If they’re fighting with their brothers or sisters, check out our page on managing multiple children for some tips on keeping the peace. Our page on activities for multiple children also has ideas for ways to keep the busy!

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Tips for older children and teens

Getting older kids active may not be so easy if they’re determined to stay stuck to their screens! To motivate them, suggest activities that they’re likely to enjoy or be good at, and let them choose how and when they exercise, so they feel they’re in control of the situation. Our page on tips for teens to get outdoors and get active has lots of ideas – adults can join in too! 

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