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FACTS FOR FAMILIES: 10 tips to stay active at home

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Cheri Burcham

For many of us, exercise routines have been put on hold due to social distancing recommendations and schedules that have us home more than usual. Get creative by adding physical activity into our daily lives at home. Several of the tips below also encourage activity with family and can be great as brain breaks for children and adults who are working and schooling from home.

Regular physical activity can have long-term health benefits including relieving stress, improving sleep, reducing fat, controlling weight, and preventing chronic diseases. Get moving and have fun with it!

1. Dance Breaks: Put on some music and just dance. Dance by yourself. Dance with your kids. Dance with your family. This activity doesn’t require any special equipment.

2. Social Media Group Fitness: Several fitness instructors offer free online fitness and dance classes. You can also search on social media photo and video platforms for at home workouts.

3. Fitness Apps: Wearable fitness devices and mobile apps are a great reminder to move. Some apps and devices allow goal setting for number of steps or calories burned. Reminders throughout the day sent right to your phone or wearable device can help you move more.

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4. Take a walk: A walk around the neighborhood is a great way to get moving by yourself or with your family.

5. Parents vs. Kids Fitness Challenge: Challenge your kids to a fun fitness contest. See who can do the most jumping jacks, who can do the most pushups, or who can hold a plank the longest.

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6. Go for a bike ride: A quick bike ride around the neighborhood is a great way to get moving. Bring the whole family along to get everyone moving.

7. Play sports with your kids: This is a great opportunity to get in the game with your kids. Instead of watching them play a game of basketball, soccer, jump rope, or tag, get in the game.

8. Yard work: This can be a great time to get some things done outdoors. Weeding, trimming bushes, raking leaves, or gardening can be great exercise. Relax, unplug, and tap into nature.

9. Take the stairs at home: Try going up and down the stairs more to get in some extra physical activity.

10. Have a cleaning party: Cleaning can be a great form of exercise. Put on your favorite music and get going. This can be a great way to get your family moving too!

Find more COVID resources online at

For more information on University of Illinois Unit 19 programming and to read more helpful articles, visit our website at , call us at 217-345-7034 or contact Cheri Burcham at Also visit the Family Files Blog at


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