February 3, 2011

the big list of ways to get active inside

This is my big list of ways to burn off some excess energy when you are not able or willing to take the children outside.  Some of them can get quite rough depending on the age and skills of your children.  For example, I do not allow my children to throw balls or beanbags or anything inside because of their strong but often inaccurate throwing arms.  Please use your judgement about whether a particular activity is safe for your space, your stuff and your children.
  • play miniature golf.  If you don’t have a toy golf set you can use empty tin cans laid on their sides as holes, ping pong balls and a newspaper club.
  • create an obstacle course. Here is a suggestion to get your creativity flowing.
  • try some brain gym exercises.  These are brain-body movements believed to contribute to learning.
  • play with shape stretchies
  • do some yoga
  • play beanbag toss
  • dance around the room
  • follow along with an exercise DVD or exercise show on TV
  • play Simon Says
  • have a pillow fight
  • play an active game like Hullabaloo or Twister
  • play hopscotch.  You can use pieces of paper as the squares.
  • do housework
  • jump on the bed
  • practise wheelbarrow walking
  • do a circuit of activities, such as donkey kicks, push-ups and jumping jacks
  • bounce on a space hopper
  • have a tug-o-war
  • play Follow the Leader
  • do some action dances, like the Hokey Pokey, the Limbo or Dr Knickerbocker
  • practise for a sack race.  Use pillowcases as sacks.
  • use the floor as a skating rink.  Place pieces of paper under your feet and slide around the floor.  If you have tiles (or probably wood) wear socks.
  • pretend to be animals
  • pretend to play sports
  • practise 3 legged walking
  • do some ten pin bowling
  • play hacky sack
  • walk on stilts.  You can make your own with tin cans and string.
  • play elastics (Chinese jump rope)
  • jump rope
  • practise balancing
  • play balloon volleyball or balloon tennis
What do you do with your children to burn of some energy inside?


Marie said...

Great list!

We've been doing crafts and a lot of reading. My two seem to really enjoy snuggling under the blankets and reading and/or being read to lately -- which has been rather nice on these cold, icy days!

I'm a new follower :-)

Jackie@My Little Bookcase said...

What a terrific list. I'm with you no balls in the house. It always ends in disaster. Your balloon games ideas are good ones. Ball sports without the danger of breakages! My experience with active activities indoors is that it always ends in tears! Before I went on family leave I was teaching Grade 4. They absolutely loved brain gym, yoga and meditation.

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rachelle @ said...

We make art - lots and lots of it!! My older child is two and a half, so I also get a lot of mileage out of setting up sensory tubs full of rice, beans, ice, jello, water, flour, cornstarch, etc. I love that you put "housework" on the list. My child is obsessed with vacuuming, and by including her I can justify clean-up as an activity.