Ways to Stay Active in the Winter

Madison, WI has some pretty tame winters, but it also can have some very harsh ones. With plenty of snowfall, ice storms, and hazardous low temperatures, venturing outside often seems quite questionable in the winter. Top all that off with dangerous driving conditions, and you have a recipe for staying inside, snuggled up by the fire under a pile of blankets.

There are, however, still family friendly things to do to stay active in the winter, regardless of the weather outside.

Indoors

Sports Leagues

Many sports have an off season, but that doesn’t mean players shouldn’t be practicing! Check out an indoor sports league such as basketball, soccer, or swimming. Popular places include your local YMCA as well as Keva Sports Center in Middleton, WI.

Actively Volunteer

Stay active while also doing good deeds. Sign your family up to volunteer at a local soup kitchen. Bring the kids door to door in your neighborhood to ask for charity donations (be sure to officially sign your family up first, as specific rules apply). Spend time wrapping gifts for those in need during the holiday season.

While some volunteering opportunities require moving around more than others, it still helps make a positive impact on the community.

Chores Galore

If the weather outside is downright awful and leaving the house is out of the question, try making chore time more of a physical activity.

  • Hide pennies or stickers around the house and encourage your child to find them as they dust.
  • Time your child or children and offer a fun reward should they beat the clock.
  • For younger children, have them pretend to be their favorite animal as they clean.
  • Come up with a fun cleaning song together.
  • Older children might benefit from a chart created with their names, chores, and list of rewards once completed.

Shopping Made Fun

Turn shopping into exercise! Try planning your shopping excursions in advance. Check your list of items needed and find a map of the stores or mall you will be visiting. Purposely route your walking so you are visiting stores further away but still within walking distance.

Even if you don’t have shopping to do necessarily, you can always walk the mall with your kids regularly to get in some cardio. Don’t forget to park far away to walk a longer distance to stores!

Outdoors

There are a lot of different activities for families to stay active during the winter months. Some of our favorites are:

  • build snowmen
  • make a snow fort
  • create a field of snow angels
  • have a snowball fight
  • go sledding
  • learn a new winter sport
  • try ice skating
  • learn ice fishing

Join A Walk/Run

As you may know, our very own Dr. Mark Gustavson and Dr. Brian Porter actively participates in walks, runs, and biking events for charity. And you can, too!

There are countless opportunities to stay active in winter by joining a charity run such as Crazy Legs or the Shamrock Shuffle, and most are family friendly.

Stay Active, Stay Safe

No matter how you choose to stay active with your kids this winter, make sure you also stay safe and warm. It is important to always check the weather before leaving the home, and to also plan ahead. Stock your cars with extra blankets, boots, salt, flashlights and handwarmers. Make sure roads are safe for travel.

Stay active this winter, but also stay safe!