Thursday, December 8, 2016

Indoor Physical Activities for Toddlers/Young Kids

I'm not sure what the weather has been like where you are, but here in Colorado it's been coooold the last couple days!  Now I don't mind if it's in the 30s or 40s, because as long as I bundle up my son and myself I know we'll be fine outside.  (Especially if it's sunny!)  But yesterday I think it got to about 15 and today is the same, and with the wind chill it feels closer to 0 or less.  So...that brings me to this post.  I could have also titled it something like "how to not go stir crazy inside this winter" or "how to keep your kids from jumping off the walls.." but I went with the more positive one. :)  (I think I'm so clever...)  But, maybe everybody's toddler isn't like mine.  I mean, J is a pretty big boy and very, very active.  He is a good eater, he's a good sleeper (and napper) and he needs to get a lot of wiggles out throughout the day, in addition to regular reading time and play time.

So after yesterday being the first really cold day where I didn't want to take little J outside, unless I had to, I came up with a few of these things below and then also did a quick google search to find some other clever, and inexpensive ideas!  If you have more please comment below or on social media and I will add them there!  Thanks!

Ideas for Home:

Ball Pit - we got a hand-me-down from a friend (the best right?) but it's similar this one

Tag - nothing better than a good ole fashioned game of tag to get the heart pumping.

Dance Party - Put on some fun music and just dance, dance, dance .  (Can you name that song without googling?!?!?!)

Jumping - We currently just jump in up and down, but we're thinking about picking up one of these.  Anybody have experience with a toddler on one of those?  He uses one at gymnastics some, so he has some experience and loves to jump!

Gynmastic Moves/Skills - hand/headstand, cartwheel, forward/backward roll, crab walk, bear crawl, etc...  I'd highly recommend spotting to make sure their necks are ok.  And there are probably good YouTube vids on how to do these things and how to spot.  We learned them at J's gymnastics class.

Balance Beam - J loves to do this at gymnastics and he has a cousin who has one at their house.  We may be making a makeshift one out of a 2x4 this winter too.  And I just found this tutorial for a homemade beam that was less than $30 and looks legit.

Hopscotch - Either with these tiles or something homemade like fabric/felt!

Indoor Basketball Hoop/nerf ball - I think we're either going to clean up our hoop and bring it inside or get an over the door hoop.  Either way we'll pick up a nerf or foam ball to go with it and I think J will loooove it.

Peek-a-boo over the couch - Hours of entertainment here, or at least a good solid 15 minutes at least!  J loves to play "ka-boo"

Pile up the Couch Cushion - let the kids jump into them.  (From one of my friends and readers Sam!)  Makes me wish that our cushions came off our couch!  Fun!

Community Indoor Ideas:

Gynmastics class or drop in time - we do have gymnastics every week, but we are also going to be checking out the drop in time at the Community Center in town.  It's only a couple dollars for a couple hours of play in a padded gymnastics gym.

Mall Walking - I've likely mentioned it before that this is something my husband and I started doing a few years ago in the colder weather and it's even more handy now with a little one.  We usually still take the stroller and get most of our laps in before we let little J out to walk (and run because that's his only speed) around as much as his little heart desires.  Best part=free!

Indoor trampoline, play houses or climbing walls - These vary in price and we have yet to go to one, but we have a lot of friends who frequent these especially in the winter months.

Indoor swimming, skating or ice skating - I'm torn about the swimming in the winter because of the whole going back out in the cold with wet hair, but I suppose you could take a blow dryer with you...  All these vary depending on what you do and sometimes by length of time and skate rental.

I got a couple ideas from each of these sites below.  You may find more ideas there too, I just picked the ones that were the most age appropriate for toddlers and young kiddos. :)
http://www.nfsmi.org/documentlibraryfiles/pdf/20120501081030.pdf and https://mommypoppins.com/newyorkcitykids/25-exercise-games-indoor-activities-for-kids

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