Keep the Whole Family Active for Summer

By: Stacia Naquin Email
By: Stacia Naquin Email

As parents, you want the best for your kids. But finding fun activities to keep them moving can sometimes be challenging. With his kids, Certified Personal Trainer Jerod Langness has found that if the activity is fun and relates to things they enjoy, they are more motivated to participate. He has found that limiting sedentary rituals such as watching TV and playing on the computer, creates an environment to challenge their creativity to find fun activities. The kids have actually come up with some pretty cool ideas themselves, along with their parents, to stay active and healthy.

Using music can bring out activity for many kids. His girls create dance routines to their favorite songs and perform them after dinner. He says it’s amazing the difference from music to TV on how the kids move. His girls challenge their minds by trying to design dances that fit the music, along with breaking a sweat practicing the moves.

Being an active parent can make a big difference in how your kids respond to exercise. Kids love to imitate adults, especially their parents. When they see their parents enjoying a healthy lifestyle, they want to share that same joy. He brings his kids to cheer on their mom when she runs her races, and they watch dad play around on the basketball court. The real magic happens when you, as parents, join them in their fun. Instead of sending them in the backyard to play, join them. Show them your moves on the trampoline or the court. Teach them the dance moves that you did when you were young. Ask them to show you exercises that they do in gym class. You’ll be amazed at how much fun you will have, and the confidence your kids will have because you were willing to take the time to play.

Depending on the season, Jerod has his girls in different activities. They have tried many different things over the years. The one big rule they have is that if they started, they have to finish. They are not allowed to quit until the season is done. Because of this, they have developed coordination and skills from different activities. This has helped them during summer months by encouraging them to come up with creative things to do inside and outside the house relating to things they have learned in different practices and activities. As a Personal Trainer, this has helped Jerod to come up with activities that kids can relate to and enjoy. The activities work on developing their coordination, improving their reaction time, challenging their balance, and improving their overall skills for the sports the play. He has tried to design exercises that kids can progress through, and also enjoy doing. Some are not easy, but the kids definitely enjoy the feeling of accomplishment when they overcome the challenge.

The overall goal is to keep kids healthy. There’s an uphill battle with our busy lifestyles, easily accessible processed food, and technology that makes it possible to go an entire day without leaving your living room and have everything at your fingertips. Jerod says we need to be honest with ourselves and take responsibility as parents to show kids how important being healthy is. The reward is priceless. “We have the opportunity to spend quality time with our families, and make a difference in their lives by choosing a better way,” said Jerod.

Here are some examples of exercises he does at home with the kids:

1. Soccer toe touches – stand with one foot on a soccer ball. Switch feet as fast as possible, back and forth while still maintaining control of the soccer ball. Set a goal of either repetitions or time to hit for each set.

2. Lateral lunges – stand up straight. Step to the side, keeping your feet facing forward. Squat down on the leg that you stepped with. Be sure to push your weight through your heel. Return to standing and repeat with the other leg. Try doing 20 total repetitions.

3. Floor crunch with ball raises – Lay down on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Hold a ball above your chest with your arms straight. Raise your upper body to where your shoulder blades are off of the floor. Imagine you are trying to touch the ceiling with the ball. Lower your upper body back down without letting your shoulder blades touch the floor and repeat. Try 15 to 20 Repetitions.

These exercises work on some key movements related to sports improvement. With a balanced program, you can develop your skills and coordination.

For more information regarding fitness and nutrition, contact Jerod at 24 Hour Fitness, 719-244-9532.

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