Still taking the elevator instead of climbing the stairs? The Monumental app might change that. It lets your child choose a monument to climb like the Eiffel Tower or Pyramid of Giza and expands on the adventure based on how many steps they climb in real life. Through the magic of smartphone motion-sensor technology, this little program keeps track of your kid’s activity and won’t let him check out the view or collect souvenirs unless he gets up and gets moving. As a bonus, your kids might learn more about geography than they ever will in class.
Teenagers who hate the word “exercise” but love to shop might get a literal kick out of the Zamzee app. In exchange for staying active, kids get credits for purchasing real stuff (clothing, gift cards, sports gear) at the Zamzee store. To record their movement, your child will clip on a tiny device, about the size of a flashdrive, and wear it throughout the day. Any kind of movement counts — jumping on the bed, walking the dog, dancing in your room! This app is still in the beta-testing phase, but the results are showing that the average teenager increases their activity levels by as much as 30% each month. This is the equivalent of running a monthly marathon.
I am LOVE: Kids’ Yoga Journey
Younger children will appreciate this iPad or iPhone app. It carries them on a magical journey through the captivating land of ancient Egypt to tell a story designed just for them complete with 13 yoga poses presented by the kids in the story. In addition to inspiring your child to start one of the healthiest exercise programs ever created, this app caters to a variety of learning styles to fully engage your child. If your child is a visual learner, they can read the story while auditory learners can listen. The amazing story line and colorful imagery will make this app an instant favorite and start your child on their journey to discovering fitness through the mind/body connection of yoga.
From the Furby to the Neopet, kids of all ages have been captivated by the notion of caring for an electronic pet. The Trainer app takes this concept to a new level by giving your child the responsibility of taking care of a creature with both dietary and fitness needs. But it’s not just clicking buttons on a screen: your child must exercise along with her e-pet to keep her charge healthy. This game can help overweight kids and teens get fit and learn about responsibility in a fun way.
Although this free app doesn’t include an exercise program, it does address the important issue of nutrition. It offers beautiful and engaging imagery that makes it a little more fun for your child to satisfy their daily needs for fruit and vegetables. Once you see your kid voluntarily pick an apple or a few carrots over that bag of chips, you’ll know that this was their key to healthy snacking.
Although making fitness fun can help with teen weight loss, making it cool is even better! As long as you can tie the idea of exercise and nutrition in with your kid’s smartphone or tablet, you’ll be able to motivate most overweight kids or teens to get off the couch and get moving!
Want more ideas to get your family off the couch? Check out Ten Gifts to Get Your Family Moving