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Put a Little Play into Your Day

Fun for Active Families

Keeping Your Family Physically Active on a Budget

Being physically active doesn't mean going to a gym or buying expensive equipment. There are many ways to keep your family active and not break the bank.

  • Play with your kids. Use free time and make it active time. Getting the whole family involved with play time promotes the idea that being active is fun.
  • Explore your community. Visit local parks, playgrounds or events where you live. Many communities have free or low-cost events and spaces for family fun. Check online, your local paper or call your local recreation center.
  • Have toys that promote physical activity. Give your children low-cost toys like balls and jump ropes that encourage physical activity and get them moving.
  • Get creative with household items. Use items around the house for on-the-spot fun. Use a broom for limbo, turn on the music and dance, create an obstacle course or play hide-and-seek.
  • Use everyday opportunities. You may not realize it, but some activities like cleaning or making dinner can become part of your family's activity. You can include daily activities by encouraging kids to help and making it fun. Spending less time in front of the T.V. or playing video games is a win.

Tips to Help You and Your Family Eat more Vegetables and Fruits:

  1. Buy fresh vegetables and fruits that are in season. They cost less and are likely to be at their peak flavor.
  2. Keep a bowl of whole fruit on the table, counter or in the refrigerator.
  3. Stock up on frozen vegetables for quick and easy cooking in the microwave. Most vegetables are naturally low in fat and calories. None have cholesterol. (Sauces or seasonings may add fat, calories or cholesterol.)
  4. Buy vegetables that are easy to prepare. Buy packages of vegetables such as baby carrots or celery sticks for quick snacks.
  5. Vary your vegetable choices to keep meals interesting.
  6. Refrigerate cut-up fruit to store for later.

Family Fun Physical Activity

Enjoy these activities with your kids for a fun way to teach them about physical activity.

Physical Activity Calendar

Every bit of physical activity adds up to reach your weekly goal. Take advantage of the time you have with your family to be active. Create a calendar with a week of physical activity ideas for the whole family.

  1. Make it a Family Event. Have a family discussion and make your kids part of the decision making process. Ask them what ideas they have for family activities. Pick times that work best for you whole family.
  2. Being Active at Work. Develop an active work routine that works best with your schedule. Go for a walk during lunch or when you have a break. Take the stairs whenever you can, it will increase your daily activity and not take any extra time!

Active Games

Physical activity is good fun for the whole family. Active games allow kids to be active and get positive experiences with physical activity. Try some of these activities with your family:

  1. Balloon volleyball
    What you need: String, Balloons
    Description: Put a piece of string across the room (about head height). Divide half the players to either side. One side will hit the balloon over the string and the other side must return the balloon without letting the balloon touch the ground.
  2. Rock Paper Scissors Tag Description: The game is played with the same concept as "Rock, Paper, Scissors". Players will meet in the middle and play "Rock, Paper, Scissors". The winner chases the other player back to the designated safe zone behind each player. If that player is tagged before they can reach the safe zone, they join the other side and continue playing.
  3. Target Practice What you need: Targets (cups, paper plates or anything else that isn't fragile) and items to throw (rolled socks or other soft items).
    Description: Hang up or place targets around a certain area. This is a good opportunity to have kids create their own targets as an extra activity before the game. Make sure any items that can break are moved out of the playing area. Use rolled up socks to try and hit the target. Hit the target, and move farther away. This game is great for building hand-eye coordination for younger kids.

All About Physical Activity

Educate your family and friends with these fun facts.

Click on one of the facts below to learn something new.
All About Whole Grains

Sleep is an important part of living an active life. Just an extra hour of sleep for a child can lower their risk of being overweight by nearly 10%.

Drinking more water and limiting sugar-sweetened beverages is an important part of an active lifestyle.

  • Drink small amounts of water throughout the day.
  • Replace sugary drinks with water.
  • Drink water before bed and when you wake up.
  • Take a water bottle with you and fill it up often.
  • Flavor your water with fruits or vegetables to mix it up.

Moderate physical activity will raise your heartbeat and cause you to sweat. Vigorous activity will cause heavier breathing and increase heart rate a lot. You won�t be able to say more than a few words when doing vigorous activity.

Daily physical activity is one of the most important things you can do for your health. There are many benefits to being active:

  • Helps control your weight
  • Reduces risk of heart disease
  • Strengthens muscles and bones
  • Improves mental health and mood
  • Increases your chances of living longer

Physical activity is important for everyone, but how much you need is based on your age.

  • Adults (18-64): At least 150 minutes of moderate activity each week and muscle-strengthening activities at least two days per week.
  • Children (6-17): 60 minutes or more each day. This includes muscle- and bone-strengthening activities at least three days per week.

Calories used for physical activities can vary from person to person, depending on their size . To track your physical activity, use SuperTracker (

  • Activity

  • Walking (3.5 mph)
  • Dancing
  • Yard Work
  • Running (5 mph)
  • Swimming
  • Basketball
  • Calories Used

  • 140
  • 165
  • 165
  • 295
  • 255
  • 220

Yes! Physical activity can reduce your risk of depression, help you sleep better and even reduce stress.

Meet Champion Mom Katie

Recognizing amazing moms from Arizona, and what makes them champions.

“Growing up, I remember my parents playing with me after school until dinner was ready. That taught me the importance of staying active and spending time with the family. Seeing my two boys playing at the park or playing in the house makes me feel good. I know that being active is important and that they are learning healthy habits that will last a lifetime.”

- Katie,
Champion Mom from Arizona

Katie made healthy changes because her kids are important to her. As a family they are active together and play together at home. Katie's kids learn the importance of physical activity and will continue being active as they grow.

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