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You have an hour between school and dinner when everybody’s wiped, and a screen in every room that seems to be calling out “Resistance is futile…” (Let’s not fight, Alexa.) But don’t sweat it. Here are eight ideas to make family workouts feel a lot less like work.

RELATED: 7 Easy (and Brain-Stimulating) Activities for Toddlers

kid exercise dog

Get a Dog

Romping in the yard, bounding down a nature trail, bonding at a dog beach in every season…Screens are no match for puppy slobber. Trust. 

RELATED: What Dog Breed Should You Get Based on Your Personality Type?

kid exercise rock gym

Plan Creative After-School Activities

Chess club and tennis are awesome, but not every kid is destined to be Bobby Fischer or Serena Williams. Why not give their pent-up energy an out-of-the-box escape valve? No one under 18 is going to say no to trapeze school, trampoline parks or rock-climbing class.

kid exercise butterfly

Plant a Butterfly Garden

It’s official. Gardening is “excellent exercise,” according to the CDC. Spring is coming. (We see you, March 20!) And certain flowers are known to attract butterflies (and hummingbirds).  All that’s left to do is go buy some bulbs with your babes.

kid exercise swimming


Speaking of butterflies, you don’t need to teach your kids Phelpsian strokes to get the most out of pool time. Anyone who has ever seen a two-year-old nap after splish splashing in a Bubble Babies class at the Y will attest to that.

RELATED: The 7 Best Swimming Holes in America

kid exercise dance

Dance (Party) Like There’s Nobody Watching

We’re just going to come out and admit it: We regularly copy James Corden’s Toddlerography at home. 

kid exercise jumping bed

Jump on the bed

We know, we know: That poor monkey mama had to call the doctor so many times. But with supervision, there are safe ways to enjoy this endorphin extravaganza. One mom we know put a queen-size mattress on her living room floor for exactly this purpose.

kid exercise picnic

Make everything an outdoor activity

Need to buy produce? Hit a farmers’ market instead of your local superstore. Having a playdate? Take everyone on a scavenger hunt in nature. Brunch with Nana? Make it a picnic in the park! “But it’s February,” you say? Kids don’t care! Their metabolic rates and high activity levels make kids far less uncomfortable in cold weather than you are.

kid exercise geochache

Um, have you guys heard of Geocaching?

Think Pokémon Go with a wholesome, crunchy, family-friendly twist. If they’re not going to put their phones down anyway, you might as well keep them moving.  

RELATED: The Best Trips to Take with Your Kids at Every Age

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