Fun fitness games for younger children

Children can often become caught up in video and computer games, and forget the joy of playing outside games too.

As child obesity continues to rise it is vital we find ways for them to remain fit and active.

Jump rope

Jumping rope works both arms and legs, and is a good form of exercise, so teach them a game called Neuron Jump Rope. They chant the rhyme “neuron, neuron in my brain.” Followed by “How many neurons will I gain?” counting and jumping as they go. They can also challenge their friends in a fun game to find out who can get the biggest score.

Fitness challenge

Kids always enjoy challenging each other, so by setting up a fitness competition for your child and their friends, you can easily make sport fun. Hold a challenge each week and record how quickly the children improve.

Create a list of five challenges, such as running 50 yards, performing a standing long jump, completing as many push-ups as possible in one minute, climbing monkey bars or riding a bike around a slalom course of cones set up in your garden or driveway. You can tailor the challenges to your child’s interest level and age.

For plenty of ideas search for sport drill videos online, such as those at

Cross Over Relay

Show your child how to play Cross Over Relay with a few of their friends and challenge them to improve their fitness levels. This game is a combination of throwing and running, which improves coordination while really getting the heart pumping!

Divide the children into two teams, designating a goal and a starting line, each within throwing distance of the other. Each team forms a single file line, and each child in turn runs to the goal line while carrying a football. As soon as they cross the line, they turn and throw the ball to their next teammate. Whichever team has all their teammates at the goal line first, wins.

Crossing the Stream

This game is great for the leg muscles. Draw two lines in chalk on your driveway which represent the stream. Narrow and widen the distance between the lines, at no more than four feet apart. Ask your child to jump across at designated crossing points, feet together.