Family fitness fun

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Exercising together, either with friends of family, is always fun. Xinhua

 

If you think that a gym membership is the only way to achieve a fit and healthy body, you are wrong. The truth is working out does not have to cost a single cent. While the gym may provide access to various facilities and perhaps even personalised training programmes, there are still plenty of fun and effective exercises that you could do at home.

We also recommend working out in the company of your loved ones, since group workouts have proven to produce better overall health results, including improved mental well-being. In fact, a study by the University of New England found that group activities are linked to lower levels of stress and a better quality of life.

Perks of staying active as a family

1. Collective fun

Although it might sound unconventional, working out together could be the key to nurture a blissful family relationship. By keeping track each of other’s progress, sharing tips on how to achieve your collective wellness goals, you would be able to form a stronger bond with your family. After all, family who sweats together sticks together.

2. Killing two birds with one stone

We all know parenthood involves a mighty lot of juggling. Between making arrangements for the children and making time for yourself, things could get tricky. The solution is to take your workout regime to the next level by having your kids join in on the fitness fun. Planning to do an hour of yoga? Grab an extra mat and do it together with your little ones. This way you will never have to stress about the perfect after-school activities for them again.

3. Lesser screen time

In this digital age, family time could easily equate to plopping on the couch and binge-watching your favorite TV series at home. Sounds like the perfect weekend activity, doesn’t it? While this may strengthen the bond between your family members, it could also dangerously lead to a sedentary lifestyle, which is one of the main causes of obesity in both adults and children. If you still want to incorporate gadgets into it, try following a workout routine online, as a group.

4. More reasons to go outdoor

Calm down, the outdoors do not have to mean hiking the mountains or going on a 4-day trek. It could easily mean taking a leisurely walk or playing frisbee at your local park. Aside from the obvious health benefits like lower blood pressure and stress levels, a 2014 study by the University of Michigan showed that being in the outdoors could boost your daily emotions and may also contribute a non-pharmacological approach to serious conditions like depression.

Fun activities to try at home

If you have a family member who might need a special workout regime, it is advisable to consult a medical professional. Remember to take caution and do not force yourself if you feel any pain, weakness or lightheadedness. However, if you are interested in less strenuous activities that you and your loved ones could try at home and still have fun:

Throw your own mini ‘party’

It’s Saturday night, so why not crank the music up and unleash your inner dancing queen? Turn your living room into a makeshift dance floor by moving all the furniture aside, put on some dance music and boogie down. With this activity, you get the most fun since you have absolute control of the playlist and you will break a sweat without realising that you are working out. The kids would love it too.

What you need: music and an open space

Health perks: increases muscular strength, endurance, motor fitness, aerobic fitness and coordination

Badminton battle

If you are not much of an outdoorsy person, this would be a good activity since badminton is an indoor sport. A recreational game of badminton would typically bring out your healthy competitive side, which adds up to the fun. You can play a game of singles or doubles, depending on the number of participating family members. Oh and of course, winners get to brag at family dinners.

What you need: badminton rackets, shuttlecocks and an open space

Health perks: improves metabolic rate, muscle strength, flexibility, concentration and reflex rate

Go to the park

Find a reason to go to the park. From walking the dog, to taking a stroll, to running, or even playing frisbee, the list of things to do is endless. If your neighborhood park is too small for your likings, get everyone in the car and take a trip to a bigger park just outside the city. The conversations that you will have while on your way there will also contribute to the overall quality family time.

What you need: a pair of trainers, a frisbee or a ball and water

Health perks: increases cardiovascular and pulmonary fitness, reduces the risk of heart disease and stroke, and improves conditions such as high cholesterol and high blood pressure

If you are interested in doing more for yourself and loved ones, get protected with AIA’s life insurance solution which covers 26 conditions of critical illnesses and medical operations in Cambodia and overseas. To inquire further, please contact an AIA Life Planner at 086 999 242.

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