Your Total FitQ Points Today
Total
Points
Today's Top 10 High Scores
See All Rankings
FitQ Points
Get Points!
Rate This:
Font Size
A
A
A

Kid Exercises: The 4 Types You Need

Tweens playing soccerYou know physical activity is good for your body. But you might not know that there are four different types of exercise. Each type helps your body in different ways. The great news is that a lot of what you like doing probably counts as at least one of these types of exercise. 

See how your favorite activity helps your body. Plus, get some ideas for new ways to move.

When you move, it helps your body in a lot of ways.

1. Aerobic activity gets your heart pumping and your lungs working harder. It also may make you sweat. Aerobic exercise helps your mind and mood, too. How? It releases "feel-good" chemicals into your body. When you can, get outside and move in nature.

Aerobic exercise should make up most of the one hour you spend on physical activity every day. What counts as aerobic exercise? Here are some activities to try:

  • Skateboarding or rollerblading
  • Canoeing, rowing, or cross-country skiing
  • Fast walking, hiking, jogging, or running
  • House cleaning or yard work
  • Dancing to music
  • Playing tag or jumping rope
  • Basketball or volleyball
  • Biking
  • Tennis, hockey, or soccer
  • Swimming
  • Cheerleading, gymnastics, or aerobics

2. Muscle strengthening gives you greater power. But you don't need dumbbells. Even climbing on the jungle gym makes you stronger.

Do muscle-strengthening activities at least three times a week. Here are some activities that build strong muscles:

  • Rope, rock, or tree climbing
  • Running or rowing
  • Push-ups, pull-ups, or sit-ups
  • Tug-of-war
  • Gymnastics or cheerleading
  • Working out with exercise weights or resistance bands. If you don't have weights, you can use cans of food or full water bottles instead -- they work too.

3. Bone strengthening exercise helps your bones grow and keeps them strong. 

You should do these exercises at least three times a week. Bone strengthening activities include:

  • Jumping rope, hopping, or skipping
  • Running
  • Hiking
  • Gymnastics, basketball, volleyball, or tennis

4. Stretches make your muscles more flexible. They can help you can reach and bend and turn better. Being flexible can help you avoid getting hurt.

You can do special stretching exercises like toe touches or side stretches. But other physical activities are great for flexibility, too. Try:

  • Yoga
  • Martial arts
  • Dance
  • Gymnastics


There are all sorts of ways you can get active. You can pick aerobics, muscle or bone strengthening exercises, or stretching. Why not start out by just dancing to some music? The first step is to just start moving.

WebMD Medical Reference

Reviewed by Roy Benaroch, MD on February 06, 2014