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Creative ways to get the kids moving in no time

(ARA) - As the weather gets colder, kids are less likely to get outside to run and play. Experts say it can take only a few minutes a day for kids to get the benefits of play, but it's not easy for them to resist the call of the television. While it may seem difficult to tear them away from the TV, there are fun and creative ways to help kids get up, active and burn some energy in a short amount of time.

Get Up

· The best way to get kids to move it is with music. If a child has a favorite movie, purchase the soundtrack and get up and dance! Animated movies, like DreamWorks Animation's upcoming "Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa," feature high energy grooves that encourage kids to dance and sing along. Even the movie's character toys that come in McDonald's Happy Meals encourage movement with an extension of the company's campaign featured at Happymeal.com to encourage families and children to take "One Minute to Move It."

· Video games are incredibly popular with kids of all ages and now games are available that encourage kids to be active. Try games that include interactive components like dance pads or an interactive gaming console so kids can play tennis or baseball. Add another "tech toy" to the mix with an inexpensive heart rate monitor watch. Make it a game for kids to give it their all for just five minutes and set an elevated, but safe, target heart rate for them to get to.

· Make up silly games to play for just one minute. Challenge them to touch their toes fifteen times while singing or to grab a friend and clean their room as quickly as they can.

Get Out

· Walk to the local library. A book is the reward at the end of the walk and something to be excited about when they get home.

· There are four seasons, so get out and enjoy them all. Take a nature hike through a nearby park and experience all the changing seasons have to offer. Organize a "treasure hunt" and let kids collect leaves, rocks and other found objects.

·Sports like soccer or football only require a group of kids, a ball and an outdoor space. Take advantage of nice weather days and bundle up for a game outside. Run or jog for one-minute to warm up and get the heart pumping.

Get Together

· More school districts are cutting back on buses to save on fuel costs, but even if your buses are still running, try the "walking school bus." Organize an adult or two (the "drivers") to walk with a group of kids to school and home again to guarantee kids are active for a few minutes each day.

· Sign kids up for a class at the local community center. Karate, gymnastics and dance are popular ways to get exercise and learn many other valuable skills.

Getting moving can have a positive impact on the health and happiness of kids - and the entire family.

Courtesy of ARAcontent