SPRING Break is upon us and offers the perfect time to shake off the cobwebs of winter and get outside and play.
If the kids have been mainly sedentary for the past number of months, spring break is the perfect time to change the picture and get active.
If you are going to be looking for childcare, make sure the kids will be outside and moving a lot in whatever program you choose.
Another option is to hire a high school student. Make sure this is a student who likes to be outside and set up a program
of outings to Ambleside Park, hiking in Lynn Canyon, or exploring the neighbourhood and visiting local parks and hiking trails.
ParticipACTION wants to remind us that it's important to incorporate physical activity into the daily routine at a young age so it becomes second nature as an adult.
Make sure to switch activities up and keep them exciting. It will feel less like a chore and more like a break from the daily grind - and what better time to start than spring break! Parents, why not start getting active as a family?
You are more prone to stick to physical activity when you have someone holding you accountable. You will also create memories and a strong team dynamic where your children feel supported.
Here are a few Spring Break ideas from ParticipACTION:
. Snowshoeing at Cypress Mountain: This can be a lot of fun and great exercise. You can pace yourself as there is the option of a guided tour or self-guided on the trails. Additionally, it gives you time to talk with your kids, with no cellphones or video games distracting you.
. Rollerblading and bike riding the Sea Wall: This can be an inexpensive way to entertain the kids for a day. Pack a picnic lunch and ride the Seawall. You can play I-spy around the water and learn about the history of Stanley Park.
If you don't have your own bikes you can rent them right near the park at Bayshore Rentals for a reasonable price.
. Hiking at a local park: B.C. is known for its beauty so why not take your kids out on an adventure! Have your children stop for a minute, close their eyes and ask them to tell you what they hear and smell.
Activities like this illustrate how every little element creates the larger picture, and how together they create the beautiful province we live in. You can find a regional park in your area via Metro Vancouver's website.
. Playing at your neighbourhood park: This can be a good way to encourage children to play in group settings, and can be a great way to instill confidence in the more timid.
Begin by playing a favourite game of your child's, and slowly interacting with other children on the playground. By encouraging group play in a safe setting you are teaching your kids about team dynamics and how to be a better communicator.
Once you have gone to the park with your child, involve other children of the same age and soon the kids can join up and go to the park on their own.
These are a few ideas to get you started. Involve the kids in the planning. You can start the planning for the holiday by suggesting either these ideas or others to your kids and then have them tell you what would interest them most.
This Spring Break, get out there, get fit and make memories!
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ParticipACTION's Bring Back Play Funmobile will make a tour stop at Lonsdale Quay from 2 to 5 p.m. on Tuesday, March 19. The tour brings a truck full of fun games, activities and giveaways to rally and inspire parents and caregivers to motivate children to move more.
Kathy Lynn is a professional speaker and author of Who's In Charge Anyway? and But Nobody Told Me I'd Ever Have to Leave Home. If you want to read more, sign up for her informational newsletter at parentingtoday.ca.