Here in South Central PA, it’s cold. The past few weeks have had a few warmer days but overall December was cold and January’s likely to be colder! How can you keep kids moving and active when the weather’s uncooperative? There are a few options both at home and out and about.
Kid-themed exercise dvds are a great, inexpensive alternative to heading outside but allows kids to blow off some steam. There is a multitude of choices at sites like amazon.com that also offer reviews so you can make sure it’s worth your time. The show HI-5 can be found on Discovery Kids channel in the morning and although it is a television show, it really encourages movement like dancing and exercise. My daycare children love it and they will be up and moving through the whole show.
Another idea is to designate a place in your home that is an active zone – away from breakables, sharp corners or anything that would inhibit their (or your) fun. Buy a mat or use a thick comforter and let them do some tumbling and gymnastics.
If you want out of the house, there’s plenty to do too! Tumble Town in York Galleria is a great choice to let kids run around as much as they want. Chuck E Cheese is a good option as well but can get a little more crowded. Both of those are free play type environments but if you’re looking for something a little more organized, Hands on House in Lancaster is a good option and not too far of a drive and Nixon Park in Jacobus has some great programs for kids and is more local.
Organized classes like Gymboree, Martial Arts, Dance or Gymnastics can also be a great option to have a regular outlet for energy for children. All of those options have the benefit of having time out of the house for moms and dads as well!
If all else fails, bundle the kids up and just brave the weather. Use your judgment and make sure to wear weather appropriate clothing like mittens and hats. Winter is a good chance to see animals, birds and other nature in a new way and being outside is good for everyone.