Healthy presents for the whole family

This Christmas why not think fun and fitness  when it comes to filling the kids' stockings? 

This Christmas, we as a nation may spend more than $18 billion. Of this, around $520 million worth is estimated to be unwanted presents. 

Rather than throwing good money away or walking round shops aimlessly for hours trying to figure out what to buy your kids...
 
Here are some gifts that can bring fun, fitness and a few laughs. 

“Inactivity is a major factor in the decline of our health in today’s society,” says exercise physiologist Angela Jenkins. 

Children spend  over 2 hours a day on average on screen-based activities. As they get older this figure increases. To help tempt our children (and ourselves) away from devices and instead become more active, healthy outdoor pursuits or games can be perfect presents.

Try rock climbing

Head to your nearest indoor rock climbing centre for a full-body workout for the young and old.

“Rock climbing is an excellent activity to help build both upper and lower body strength, as well as developing concentration and problem-solving skills,” says exercise physiologist Tobias Atkins.

It can be a good bonding activity too, as those under 12 need an older person to stay with them and hold their ropes. 

Buy a board

surfing family body
Investing in a surfboard (foam ones a good option for younger children) or a stand-up paddleboard can be a terrific idea as a present.

“Paddleboarding is a great laugh for everybody within a beautiful environment and strengthens your core,” says Atkins. “Surfing is also loads of fun, and is ideal for targeting [aerobic] fitness as well as upper and lower body and core strength.”

Buy bikes for the family

“Bike rides are a great option to spend time with family and friends, see the country, get those legs pumping, all the while improving your [fitness] as well,” says Atkins.

Try some tennis

family playing tennis
“Tennis works the entire body, and it's not too jarring on the joints either,” says Jenkins. “You can work at a high or low pace, and it's an enjoyable experience for the whole family. It's a lovely way to create fun memories for all, whilst experiencing the outdoors.”
This Christmas, why not invest in activities and experiences that the whole family can enjoy. You'll create some lasting memories, while getting healthier at the same time.

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