Fun Exercises for Kids

We all know that children of all ages need physical activity daily. When it comes to kids though heading to the gym is not always your best idea. You want to encourage a lifelong love of being healthy and fit. One way of fostering healthy development is to include fun exercises for kids throughout their daily lives.

Recommendations of Daily Physical Activity for Children

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that children and adolescents ages 6 through 17 years should do 60 minutes (1 hour) or more of moderate-to-vigorous intensity physical activity each day.

Preschool-aged children (ages 3 through 5 years) should be encouraged to move and engage in active play as well as in structured activities throughout the day striving to reach 3 hours per day of physical activity of all intensities.

That is a lot of physical activity each day! And we all know kids – they like novelty, fun and excitement. Check out the ideas and suggestions below for easy and fun exercises for kids. Of course, remember to teach your children to participate safely in all exercises. It may be helpful to review some rules regarding exercise safety.

Easy and Fun Exercises for Kids

Depending upon where you live, heading outdoors is a great way to encourage physical activity and exercise in children.

Trip to the Playground

It doesn’t get much easier or fun than the playground. Set aside time for your children to explore and experience the playground climbing equipment, slides and swings. Provide assistance if necessary but encourage your children to independently play.

Go on a nature hike

Nature walks provide an opportunity for fun exercise for kids to get them away from the TV screen and video games. Your child will be getting plenty of fresh air, lowering stress levels, to help promote good energy in your child’s life. Hiking is great fun when you find interesting things along the way such as shells, leaves, or other natural objects that are scattered about. Adventures like this allow your child to get fun exercise and learn about nature at the same time.

Ride on Toys

Encourage your children to use ride on toys such as tricycles, balance bikes, scooters, and bicycles.


You might not think of bubbles as an exercise but there are so many fun ways to encourage physical movement with bubbles. Bubbles make everything more fun and playing outside makes play time even better! Blow up big bubbles along the driveway, or on the sidewalk using bubble solution. Kids will have fun running, jumping, stomping, and chasing after the bubbles.

Take a Neighborhood Walk

Physical activity doesn’t always have to be vigorous or super entertaining for kids. Often times they will enjoy a simple walk around the neighborhood while you chat about the day.

Sidewalk Chalk

Start drawing an obstacle course with sidewalk chalk. This fun exercise for kids will keep them busy and moving for a long time! Great creative!

Watch a video of the sidewalk chalk obstacle course in action.

Sidewalk Chalk Fun and Games

Indoor Fun Exercises for Kids

If the weather is bad, you can still find lots of good exercises for kids indoors too! Try some of these fun exercises for kids in a room where you have a little space.

Hide-n-go seek

Most kids love a good game of hide-n-go seek. They will be moving, squatting, and crawling into all different spaces around the house.

The Floor is Lava

Another classic kids game that encourages all sorts of movement especially jumping. There is one rule to this game – you make one thing lava. Maybe is it the carpet or the tile floor but you can not step on it. Grab some throw pillows and kids can jump their way around the room avoiding the “lava” on the floor.

Play Catch

Find a good soft ball that is easy to catch. Start close together and then step back each time you catch it. Once you are as far apart as you can go try different ways to throw the ball. Turn around and throw it backwards, toss it under your leg, throw it sitting on the floor, etc. What crazy ways can you come up with to play catch?

Teaching Catching, Throwing and Kicking Skills

Paper Towel Path

Place 10 paper towel squares in a line on a carpeted floor. The child can practice jumping from square to square. Separate the squares further. Jump again from square to square. Continue separating the squares to encourage the child to jump further distances. Try playing the game hopping on one foot. Turn on some music. Jump along the path and freeze when it stops. Don’t fall over!

Paper Cup Obstacle Course

Gather at least 12 small paper cups and head to a room with a carpet. Here are some suggestions to create an obstacle course: place 4 paper cups next to each other upside down. Several feet away, place 4 more paper cups in a line. Repeat. You have set up a small hurdle course. The child can practice jumping over the paper cups. Place the paper cups in a line with each cup about 2 feet apart. Try weaving in and out of the cups. Stack the cups in a pyramid shape and throw a soft ball at them. Use the cups as bowling pins. When done, try smashing all of the cups with your feet or hands.

Time It

Using a stop watch or kitchen timer, time how long it takes your child to complete different challenges. For example, ask your child to walk upstairs to your bedroom, come back down touch the couch and skip back into the kitchen. Go for the best time over three trials. Try different movements such as hopping, jumping, crab walk and crawling.

Want more ideas? Check out Set the Record for more fun exercises for kids!

Set the Record

Dance Party

Want super easy and fun exercises for kids? Crank up the music and dance. Mix things up and play freeze dance, invent a new dance, teach a dance to a friend and put on a dance show.

Animal Walks

Designate it ANIMAL DAY. Everyone has to move around the house like different animals – stomp like an elephant, gallop like a horse, crab walk and more!

The Animal Walks Bundle are no-prep calming tools that encourage self-regulation, exercise and deep breathing to help students succeed in the classroom! 

Shoe Box Challenges

Gather up old, recycled, shoe boxes. Spread them around a carpeted floor. Can you make it from one side of the room to the other only stepping in the boxes? Try pretending to skate or ski around the room wearing the shoe boxes as skates or skis.

Grab a soft ball and use the boxes as targets and throw wadded up pieces of paper into the boxes. How many other games can the kids come up with using the shoe boxes?


Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. How much physical activity do children need? Retrieved from the web on 8/14/21 at