Holidays

Ten ideas to get your kids active in the summer holidays

What are school holidays for? Is it a time for getting out and about and enjoying numerous adventures or is it a time to chill?

There is always a fine balance between giving your kids the time to recuperate after a hard year at school and not letting them fritter away the holidays in front of the TV.

The Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health has revealed that nearly a third (31 per cent) of children aged 2–15 years are overweight or obese, so there is a big push to get kids active during the holidays.

With this in mind, Somerset Live has compiled a list of ten ideas that will get them up and about over the summer.

Get on your bike

There are numerous health benefits from cycling and it is also an activity that most kids embrace with open arms. It is a low-impact type of exercise, which means that it is easier on the joints and, of course, kids love dashing about on the their bikes.

Somerset is blessed with a number of official cycle routes, so whether you fancy taking in the Bridgwater and Taunton canal, the woods in the Quantocks or just pootling around Yeovil Country Park, this will certainly help to blow away some cobwebs.

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Summer holidays 2017

Build a den

There’s nothing better than building a place that you can call home. If this place happens to be in the back garden, halfway up a tress and using recycled material from around the house, then it’s all the better for it.

It’s a great way for kids to get outdoors and light the creative fuse inside them.

Boarding or skating?

The thrill of air rushing through their hair is just one reason why kids should take to four wheels over the summer. From roller skating to rollerblading and skateboarding, it is a great way to get about and there’s numerous skate parks around Somerset, if they want to perfect some tricks and turns.

Jump aboard the skateboarding trend

Make a run for it

Whether it is a fun run or a charity walk, this is one of the cheapest ways of keeping fit and getting kids off the couch. Every week there are parkruns across Somerset, which is a free 5K run for those who fancy a challenge. Of course, this might be a bit much to bite off so there are 2K junior runs with Longrun Meadow in Taunton being one of the more popular events.

Walk the dog

Let’s face it, if you’re looking to get the kids up and active, the dogs shouldn’t be excused and allowed to lie in the sun all day. Taking your four-legged friends for a walk is a great way to get kids out and about and disguised as a practical component of family life. They needn’t know that they are exercising themselves as well as their dogs.

Try not to walk too many dogs at once - otherwise you could find yourself with a big fine
Try not to walk too many dogs at once – otherwise you could find yourself with a big fine

Support your kids in sport

While it might be easy to tell the kids to get off their backsides and do something, there is a level of commitment required by parents to ensure their offspring can channel their energies.

Joining a weekend club sport encourages them to make a commitment to a team and regular exercise and supporting your child in doing will make all the difference. You can find sports and activities in your area here.

Tennis can be a healthy diversion during the school holidays
Tennis can be a healthy diversion during the school holidays

Weekend wonders

What better way to unwind after a busy week than joining your children in some fun outdoor activities. Playing Frisbee or football in the park, going trampolining or even trying out some indoor rock climbing, kids will love an activity if you’re involved with it too.

Let’s go fly a kite

Flying a kite is becoming a lost art for a generation of children but The Kite Society of Great Britain is looking to reinvigorate a love for kites. The beach at Burnham-on Sea is a perfect place to get your kites in the air, with the wind rushing down its wide sandy stretches.

There are also a few local groups that will have special flying days, where experienced members offer advice and help.

Diane and James Maxwell with baby Harrison enjoying a kite at the Eggardon Kite Festival
Diane and James Maxwell with baby Harrison enjoying a kite at the Eggardon Kite Festival

Oh, we do like to be beside the seaside

What is there not to like about a trip to the beach? From building sand castles to crabbing in the rock pools, there is so much fun to be had by the sea. Somerset has some cracking beaches as well as some of the UK’s best undiscovered destinations.

A bit of sea air will also ensure that they have a good night’s sleep too.

This is one of the best beaches in Somerset
This is one of the best beaches in Somerset

Park life

If you don’t fancy a walk that is a bit of an aimless ramble, National Parks will be running a number of guided walks through some of the most breathtaking places in Britain. There will also be a number of children’s fun days, so check out your nearest National Park for an active day out.

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