5 exercises dads and young kids can do together


For the past several weeks, I've been promoting this Saturday, November 12, as Workout With Dad Day on my social media accounts (Facebook and Instagram).

The goal of this day is to get dads to workout with their children, or for everyone, to get in a workout with their own father. Workout With Dad Day is all about encouraging dads to live active, involved, healthy lives with their children. I want to make it an annual thing, so I'm hoping it gains a little bit of traction this year.

If you're like me and have children too young to take to the gym or go on a long run with, then you might be struggling to come up with exercises that they can do that will also be fun for them and keep their attention.

Just know that kids are capable of doing some pretty awesome things if they are faced with a challenge. And the encouragement of a father can be all the motivation a young child needs to step out of their comfort zone.

With that in mind, here are five exercises dads can do with their young children:

  1. Pushups - Pushups not only are a great workout, but they allow you a chance to provide your kids with a little bit of coaching on the importance of proper form and pace.
  2. Hill races - Otherwise known as hill sprints, but when you call it a race, it makes it way more fun for your kids, right?! Pick a distance that they can finish in about 5 seconds, and really make a big deal out of it when your kid beats you to the top (ket point: let your kids win).
  3. Run around the block - Or to the mailbox at the end of the street and back. Or around a track. Or wherever suits you and your children best. Pick a destination, and run there with your kiddos.
  4. Cone drills - Think back to your middle school gym class days. Remember the eraser shuttle drill? Or the ever-popular basketball court drill where you start at the baseline, and run back and forth to the free-throw line, the half-court line, and eventually the other baseline? Again, make it a race, and your kids will love it.
  5. Hot lava - I used to play this game as a kid, where I would pretend the ground/grass was hot lava, and various items I had laid out (towels, car floor mats, etc.) were the "safe zones." I would then jump from safe zone to safe zone to try and cross the hot lava. Do this with your kids, changing up the placement of the safe zones to gradually make it more difficult.

Hopefully these give you some ideas of where to start. Be creative. Make it fun. And most of all, get moving!

As part of Workout With Dad Day, I'm holding a contest. Take pictures or videos of yourself working out with your kid(s) or you own fathers, post them to social media, use the hashtag #WorkoutWithDadDay, and tag Fit Dad Fitness in your post. The best and/or most creative post wins a $100 gift card to the restaurant or store of their choice!

Happy exercising!