Did you know athletes who don’t warm up run a higher risk of injuring themselves than professionals who do take the effort? This same rule applies to your kids, as well. Summer is coming up, and kid’s outdoor sports are on the horizon. So, let’s play it safe and take a look at five family warm-up exercises to help your children avoid injury this summer.
Why a family warm-up before a workout or athletic game? According to the American Heart Association, a good warm-up before an exercise dilates your blood vessels and ensures oxygen to your muscles. It also raises your muscles’ temperature for optimal flexibility and efficiency. Plus, by slowly increasing your heart rate, the warm-up helps minimize stress to your heart.
Please tell your kids never to skip an opportunity to prepare before an exercise or athletic event. Remember, parents, these warm-up activities apply to you, too. If you’re looking for some family fitness activities you can do at home, check out this link. That said, let’s get started:
Flap Your Wings
Sometimes it never hurts to start silly. Flap your arms like a bird for 20 seconds. Now jog in place while flapping your arms for 20 seconds. This activity will make sure to get your heart rate up in no time.
Walking Knee Hugs
With each step, raise the knee to hip height or higher. Then, hug your knee with both arms, pulling your knee to your chest.
Hold your arms outstretched from your shoulders and turn in small circles. Now, increase the size of the rings. Rotate them forwards, then switch to backward circles. Or swing arms forward and back from the shoulder. You’ll start to feel a nice burn in your arms.
Sometimes a good family warm-up also includes a good stretch. Stand with your legs shoulder-width apart and arms by your side. Now, bend down from the waist so that your right-hand touches the left foot. Hold that position and count to 10, and then release. Repeat.
This exercise is an excellent opportunity to warm up your entire body. Just don’t forget to stay low! If you want to see how they move in action, watch this quick video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rr-dch4oFRM
Did these family warm-up exercises work for you and your children? Was there something I missed that you love to do? I’d love to hear your thoughts at firstname.lastname@example.org. Also, be sure to subscribe to the Heart & Soul blog to receive more great tips straight to your inbox each Friday.