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Help kids conquer sugar season by getting them off the couch

Fun, physical activities that will get kids excited to move this holiday season

The American Heart Association recommends kids ages 2 to 18, consume six teaspoons or less of added sugar a day, but between Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas children tend to consume well over the daily limit. Setting restrictions to how much children can partake in holiday season goodies can help, but ensuring they get off the couch and move their feet around is key to staying healthy during the sugar loaded season.

Below are some tips from Kilian Saekel, co-founder of a tech-based gaming system called ROXs, on fun, physical activities that kids can do indoors during the holiday season.

  • New twists on old games- Play your family’s favorite card or board games, but add a physical twist to them. For example, while playing Go Fish if you ask for a card that no one has you have to do a set amount of sit ups or pushups.
  • Chores can be fun- Turn doing household chores into a physical activity by playing music and encouraging kids to dance around while completing tasks. You can also have kids race against each other to complete tasks and the losing team has to do laps around the living room.
  • At-home gym- Set up stations around the living room, like jump rope, weights and hula hoop and have kids cycle through them setting a timer that lets them know when it’s time to rotate. This keeps kids interested in the activities since there are various stations to go to and they only do them for a short amount of time before moving on.
  • Use technology to get kids excited – Kids love technology and nowadays there are various apps and games that aim to get kids off the couch and participating in physical activities. NFL Play 60 app and ROXs 2s are both good options to get kids excited about burning off calories and sugar from holiday goodies.
  • Turn reading books or watching movies into a game- While reading or watching a movie pick a word or phrase that is frequently repeated and assign a physical activity to it. For example, if you are reading Green Eggs and Ham, every time the word egg is said you have to jump up and down three times and if ham is said you have to touch your toes.
  • Turn your house into a sports arena- Play indoor-friendly versions of your child’s favorite sports. Hallway soccer involves placing pieces of tape on the opposite sides of the hallway floor to represent the nets then give children a small ball to kick around. Volleyball can be played by tying a piece of string between two chairs and using a balloon as a ball.
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