What can my children and I do to keep active, since we live in the city?

If you live in a large city there are still plenty of options available for you and your child to be active. Living in a city will give you access to many gyms many of which offer classes that both children and parents can participate in as a family. Nearly every large city has a wide array of community centers that offer fitness classes and the ability to learn new sports and hobbies that are active, including martial arts, dancing, fencing, and other sports and hobbies. Most cities have a wide array of public parks that you and your child can go to and play and walk around in that allows you to be outside and active. Through your cities, parks and recreation department is many communities based recreational leagues, including soccer, softball, baseball, dance, ballet, tennis, golf that your child can participate in as well as yourself. If you live within walking distance of shops and stores or your city has excellent public transportation, walking to as many places as possible will help you be active and improve the health of you and your child.  

Over the past 17 years, I have lived in or visited approximately 50 american cities and 25 countries. The one common thread that I've noticed is every city or country has public parks and recreational centers. There are tons of activities you can do as a family to stay active. Some examples are pick-up kickball game, scavenger hunt, jump rope competition, build a fort or clubhouse, grow an edible garden, car wash, power walk/run/jog, frisbee, relays, and hiking trails. 

Many community recreational centers have fun filled active programs for kins that choose to do these type of activities together or with families that have similar interest. I would also recommend thinking outside the box and brainstorm as a family to see how many active events you can plan together. Stay safe and have fun this summer. Lets get moving!!!

This may depend on the city you live in.  Some have family programs that you can look into or this may be a great place to take the kids to play basketball, volleyball, swim or climb with your kids.  Doing these activities with your kids gives them confidence and grows your bond.  Be creative, make up games, go to the park, jump some rope, play some hopscotch.  The trip to the park may be an awesome time if you don't have a yard to play catch or kickball or tag.  If your city has a park or nature center you can go for walks and bike rides while noting the wildlife and plants (which is great for younger kids).  You may need to travel more, but you don't need to spend more.  Even if you need indoor activities there are always games that can be made up.

Living in a city shouldn't prevent you from being active.  Some fun things to do as a family would be to go to a local park and play games like tag, frisbee, hop scotch, leap frog, etc.  Let your kids be the guide occasionally.  Most outdoor games that children enjoy involve running and/or jumping.  If the weather is such that outdoor activities are not possible, be creative inside; play charades, musical chairs, or have a dance party.  Children take their cues from adults.  If you show them that exercise can be fun, and does not have to involve counting repetitions or doing long drawn out sessions on a piece of cardio equipment, they will begin a lifetime of good health.

Good news! Being active doesn’t require massive space. You also do not have to spend money for a gym membership. Make your body your gym. You can do pushups, sit-ups, and flexibility exercises -- such as yoga -- at home; that is a great start. Once a week, everyone can travel to a local park and play various games for outdoor fun and activity. The key is showing your children that fitness and fun can happen most anywhere. 

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.