Here are few ideas to get children more involved and keep their attention in a fitness program...
• Have campers burn a music workout CD.
• Set up a circuit training system with alternate activities between each strength training exercise. Alternate activities could be running a lap, riding an exercise bike for two minutes, throwing balls at a target, etc.
• Have them answer trivia questions before moving to the next strength training station. Keep a tally of how many questions they answer correctly in one workout.
• Work with a strength training buddy or even have more seasoned strength training campers assist the instructor in teaching beginners.
• Offer peer videotaping so that they can take turns videotaping to become more aware of how they are performing and how to improve their techniques.
• Make their own workout journals... They can put digital photos of themselves in action, include inspiring quotes, a log of their achievements, etc.
• Tally how many total pounds are being lifted during the strength training program by all campers, and plot it on a public bulletin board. You can even set goals of lifting the estimated weights of Fenway Park, a school bus, or the camp dining hall.
• Have them make their own workout posters that illustrate good form, list potential benefits, and that show their own personal goals.
Susan Langlois has over 25 years experience as a college professor, athletic administrator, camp director and sports facilities consultant. She is currently the campus director at Springfield College School of Human Services in Manchester and St. Johnsbury, N.H. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.