December 22, 2016

Indoor fitness activities to do with children

General Health

Indoor Fitness ActivitiesFor parents, it can be tough to find indoor local activities for your child(ren) to burn off some energy during the deep freeze of winter, but it’s important to help motivate them to stay active and to aim for at least 60 minutes daily of physical activity.

Winter in Wisconsin can be tough for the family to get the recommended daily amount of physical activity, especially when the temps dip below zero and safety becomes a concern with outdoor activities. As an outdoor runner, it pains my soul to have to move indoors to the “dreadmill.” But as soon as I accept the fact that the temperature is at a point that means “it will take you longer to put on your running gear to go outside than your actual run,” I roll with it.

Here are my suggestions for some indoor winter activities:


This might seem a bit crazy, but, we’re talking indoor pools and not outdoor pools. Jefferson County has many indoor pool swim locations that are perfect for kids to splash around, and for you to pretend like you’re somewhere tropical. Don’t forget to wear a warm hat when you leave! Locations include:

Roller Skating/Ice Skating

Moms and dads, this might bring a sense of nostalgia! There are a few indoor options for skating in the local area, and is a great opportunity for kids of all ages to show off their skills and to enjoy their time moving around.

Railyard Fitness

Ahhh…something near and dear to my heart—Railyard fitness. Railyard is a moveable playground that is utilized during the winter months at local communities schools, and is open for FREE. Free play for the family! It has a rotating schedule per month, and is featured at many of the local healthy community coalition events. PLEASE NOTE: Children shouldn’t be left unattended.

The upcoming dates and locations are:

January 2017:

  • Cambridge Elementary School – Gymnasium (802 West Water Street, Cambridge); Sundays, January 8, 15, 22, and 29; 2p-4p
  • Fort Healthy Coalition “Simple Swaps in ’17” Wellness Event; Saturday, January 14th, 10a-1p; Fort Atkinson High School (925 Lexington Blvd., Fort Atkinson)
  • JUMP Jefferson Coalition “JUMP into the New Year: Fun & Fitness for All” Wellness Event; Saturday, January 21, 10a-1p; Jefferson High School (700 W. Milwaukee Street, Jefferson)

February 2017:

  • Lake Mills Elementary School – Gymnasium (155 East Pine Street, Lake Mills); Sundays, February 5, 12, 19, and 26; 2p-4p

March 2017:

  • Barrie Elementary School – Gymnasium (1000 Harriette Street, Fort Atkinson); Sundays, March 5, 12, 19, and 26; 2p-4p
  • Whitewater (W3) Coalition Event; Sunday, March 12th; 1p-4p, Whitewater High School (534 South Elizabeth Street, Whitewater)

More information can be found at

Winter can be tricky to find ways to keep the kids moving, and convincing them to shovel the driveway and sidewalks may only work once or twice…and possibly with bribes. When the temperature isn’t dangerously cold, it’s always a fun day when you can be outside running, throwing snowballs, building snowmen and snow forts, and my favorite: sledding. These ideas, in addition to the others in this blog, are awesome ways to burn off energy and to have fun during the cold months of the year.

Let us know: What’s your favorite way to get creative with exercise in winter with your family?