If you are a grandparent, then you’ll know just how joyful it is to spend time with your grandchildren, watching them grow and hearing them laugh. 

During the summer holiday, from inexpensive indoor activities to outdoor adventure, we put together a list of activities to help you entertain your grandchildren whilst keeping active this summer.

As you age our body inevitably goes through many physical changes. These natural age-related changes include reduced bone density, reduced muscle strength, increased body fat, poorer coordination, and stiffer joints. These normal effects of aging may affect your mobility and balance and make them more likely to fall and break bones. As you get older, you may also become more susceptible to illnesses such as heart disease, high blood pressure, stroke, diabetes, arthritis, and lung diseases such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

All of this can have a big impact on your daily life and reduce your independence. For example, elderly people often feel that they are not as quick and steady on their feet as they used to be and find that stairs are more difficult. This can then affect their ability to get out and about and lead to reduced independence.

Top 5 activities to do with your grandchildren whilst keeping active this summer

There are so many great outdoor activities for kids to keep them entertained. Take you grandchildren into the big outdoor and go on a field trip adventure.

1. Become nature detectives

 

Children love bug hunting, whether it’s looking for crawlies in the garden or going rock pooling at the local beach. Finding and identifying insects can be educational as well as fun and easily adaptable for different ages.

Take this opportunity to build up your walking resistance.

Walking is by far the easiest form of exercise to introduce to your daily routine, either by exploring the surrounding with your grandchild, walking the dog, or enjoying a stroll with friends, going for a walk has been proven to help boost up your mood and improve mental health. 

Going for a walk can get the blood pumping around your body without putting too much strain on your cardiovascular system. Taking care of the circulatory system can lead to a reduced risk of stroke.

2. Get swimming

On hot summer days, there is nothing children like more than having some water to play in. 

Swimming is lots of fun for people of all ages and children especially love getting in the water and enjoying themselves.

But it is not just fun, swimming also provides loads of health benefits which can help to keep your children healthy and happy at the same time:

Swimming keeps your grandchild’s heart and lungs healthy, improves strength and flexibility, increases stamina, and even improves balance and posture.

Overall, swimming is an ideal physical activity, especially for those who suffer from arthritis (If you want to learn more about arthritis and how it impacts your life click this link) . This is because the water can take up to 90% of your body weight. This means that swimming will cause less strain on your joints than jogging, for example. It also helps by toning up the joints’ supporting muscles.

Swimming gives the body a complete workout. It increases both muscular and cardiovascular fitness, but can also be a fun social activity.

3. Get pedaling

If you have bikes at home, then check out some of the child-friendly cycles routed courtesy of the National Trust (insert link). The routed are perfect for little legs and legs that were not quite as young as they once were. A short cycle with a picnic at the end makes for an enjoyable day for both you and your grandchildren. 

Physical activity like pedaling or cycling can help the body flush out bacteria from the lungs and airways, reducing the chance of a cold or flu taking hold. 

Age shouldn’t be a barrier to start pedaling and you should not consider yourself too old to get moving again.

Cycling has many benefits for mature riders, many you may not have considered. Health benefits include slowing the aging process, reducing the chance of falls in everyday life, improved mental health, and overall well-being improvements. 

Top 5 activities to do with your grandchildren whilst keeping active this summer

4. Give gardening a try

Your garden is the perfect and most natural place for your grandchildren to play and learn.

Why not give your children their own area in the garden and some large pots. They can get creative by painting the pots with your help or can create their own plant markers from recycled wooden lolly sticks or by painting flat stones with a flower or the plant name.

Gardening has plenty of benefits for older people. Here are just a few of the mental and physical benefits of getting out into the garden:

  • Reducing stress levels.
  • Sense of achievement.
  • Getting out into the fresh air.
  • Helping to keep fit and active

5. Go on a hike

Hiking can be a great form of exercise as you get older. It helps you maintain your health, enjoy nature, see some great scenery, and enjoy some sunshine.

Consider your trail options before heading out.  Try choosing a trail with lots of rocks, logs, bridges, creeks, or boardwalks.  Finding trails with things for kids to climb and play on will be more exciting for them.  It can also spark their imagination and easily turn a walk in the woods into a fun play.  

For older kids, quick-changing surroundings will help hold their interest.  You can remind them of the upcoming river crossing, or watch for a specific species of tree found in that area, or even hand them the map and have them find their location based on geological features.

If you’re worried about being “too old” to hike, don’t. Many people enjoy hiking well into their 60s, 70s, and even 80s. You don’t have to take the steepest, most challenging path. A simple stroll around your neighbourhood can be a great way to enjoy a hike with your grandkids.

Top 5 activities to do with your grandchildren whilst keeping active this summer

Getting up and about and keeping active rather than sitting down all day is great for our health. 

Staying active into your golden years is a great way to ward off potential health risks such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and high blood pressure. One way to do this is by trying to keep up with your grandchildren. Take up a sport that allows you to be outside and moving

Making the most of outdoor space is accessible, and it has the bonus of having a great effect on your physical condition as well as it does on your mood. 

Enjoying some of the outdoor activities with your grandchildren combines the benefits of several physical activities while allowing the small one to learn something new. 

No matter your age, it is important to integrate physical activities regularly, as it becomes more important to stay active as you age. 

Summer holidays are a great opportunity to spend time with your grandchildren while keeping yourself active. 

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