Fitness For Preschoolers
Fitness For Preschoolers

Heel Raises- Lifting and lowering the heels is a strength-training exercise even the youngest children can do. It also helps with balance.

  • Stand facing your child.
  • Hold hands.
    • Slowly lift and lower your heels, encouraging your child to do the same thing at the same time.


  • Pause each time you rise onto tiptoe, counting aloud to five.
  • Instead of just raising your heels, you and your child can jump (two feet) or hop (one foot) lightly in place.
  • Try all of these activities both slowly and quickly.

Beanbag Balance

When it comes to balancing activities, this

is an all-time favorite for children.

  • Place a beanbag or a small, soft toy on your child’s head.
  • Invite her to walk from one point in the room to another without dropping the beanbag.
  • If she has to, she can hold on to it at first.
Fitness For Preschoolers
Fitness For Preschoolers


  • Ask her to balance the beanbag as she walks both slowly and quickly, in different directions (forward, backward, or sideward), and in different pathways (straight, curving, and zigzagging).
  • Invite her to try balancing the beanbag on other body parts, like a hand, shoulder, or elbow.
  • Jump the River- Jumping uses the child’s own weight to build strength. If you do this for long periods of time, it can be good for the heart.
  • Lay a jump rope in a straight line on the floor – or draw a line on the ground with chalk.
    Ask your child to pretend the line is a river.
  • Challenge him to jump from one side of the river to the other.


  • Be sure your child is landing with knees bent and heels coming all the way down to the floor.
  • When he’s ready, you can “widen the river” by using two ropes, side by side, or a towel.

Mirror Game- This cooperative game is great for social/emotional development. And it means children have to do with their bodies what their eyes are seeing. This will help later with writing, among other things.

  • Talk to your child about looking in the mirror.
  • Stand facing your child, explaining that you want her to do exacdy as you do – just like she were your reflection in the mirror.
  • Begin making slow movements that you can do in place, like raising and lowering an arm, nodding your head, or clapping hands. Take turns being leader.


  • To help your child be more flexible, do things like bending and straightening at the waist, stretching arms overhead, or slowly reaching for your toes (keeping knees slightly bent).
  • To help with muscle strength, lift and lower the heels or do deep knee bends.
  • To help with heart health, jog or jump in place, stopping occasionally to rest.

More Ideas for Preschoolers:

  • Bridges & Tunnels: Forming different kinds of bridges and tunnels with the body or body parts can help with both flexibility and muscle strength.
  • The Track Meet: Invite your child to pretend she’s in a track meet at the Olympics. Can she pretend to jump hurdles, in addition to “running the track? “
  • “Simon Says”: Play this excellent body-parts identification game without any elimination! To include fitness factors, have “Simon” issue challenges to jog or tiptoe in place, bend and stretch, or bend and straighten knees.
  • Statues: To get your child moving, put on a piece of up-tempo music and invite him to move while the music is playing and to freeze into a statue when you pause it.