March 17, 2020by Coombsie860

Guest Post By Anissa Harris and Joanne Taylor – See Anissa’s bio here – Anissa’s Bio Jan 2020

Let’s dance, get fit and have fun dancing up a storm into St. Patrick’s Day!

At any age or fitness level, these tips will help you and your child (or children) have fun and stay fit together. Best of all, it can be a spontaneous, squeezed into however many spare moments you have between all the things that make up a busy life.

Roughly plan a fifteen-minute workout by choosing your top four or five songs, building the warm up into the beginning of the first song and slowing for a cool down towards the middle of the last song.

Working out together is a great way to be together making happy joyful memories and can lead your child into a happy, healthy relationship with their own bodies and with you! Don’t forget to wear comfortable clothes!

1 – Music selection is completely your choice but try choosing upbeat, happy music like Can’t Stop the Feeling, Happy, Uptown Funk, Call Me Maybe or one of our favourites, The Git Up, The Chicken Dance or the Cupid Shuffle.

2 – Make a safe space to dance in. Clearing an area is essential. Be aware of tripping hazards, especially wires, toys, or shoes. If you need to, use green painter’s tape to mark out areas on the floor.

3 – Make sure everyone hydrates.  Have water bottles filled and easy to reach. If using glasses, keep them up off the floor so no one kicks them over.

4 – Warm up. Try the following warm up stretches and remember to start off slow. Ask your kids if they have any stretching exercises they’d like to show you.

  1. Stand, face one another and start by doing hip circles. Do a circular motion with your hips one way, then the other. Do this at least 5x in each direction.
  2. Continuing to stand, do small arm circles in one direction, building up to large arm circles. Alternate directions and do large to small arm circles. Try this at least 2x on each side.
  3. Star Toe Touches are fun to do together too. Stand with arms and legs straight out like a star, then bend to touch toes with each hand touching the opposite foot. Don’t feel like you need to do it in time to the music if it’s too fast a beat. Do at least 3x each side.
  4. March on the spot for at least 10 steps and then rise up on your tippy toes and slowly let your heels come back down. Put your arms out to the sides to help keep your balance.

5 – Dance moves like the Chicken Dance or The Floss are fun to do but you can wiggle twirl, and jump the whole time. Don’t worry how you look – just focus on how you feel! Look easy country line dancing or hip hop moves. It doesn’t matter the type of dance, just that you’re dancing and more importantly, dancing together. You’ll be amazing how much of a workout you get and how much fun it is.

6 – Cool down and stretch it out

  1. Squat, breath and reach starts with your feet slightly wider than hip width apart.  Squat down and cross the arms in front of the body.  As you straighten your legs back up, coming out of your squat, take a deep breath in and reach your arms up over your head.  Repeat 5x in total if you can. Count each one loudly.
  2. Keep your feet slightly wider than your hip width apart as you do the side lunge and rea Lunge to one side, keeping your knee aligned above your ankle.  Slightly lean towards the bent knee side, lifting the opposite arm up over your head.  Hold for 2-3 seconds, then alternating sides. Try to repeat this one 5x and count down from five together.
  3. For the Cat-Cow, position yourself on all 4’s. Round out your back by tucking your chin and tailbone under and hollowing out through the tummy and chest.  Follow this with arching your back.  Drop your hips and point your tailbone and chest to the sky.  Alternate “cat-cow positions approximately 5x and for fun, make the animal noises at the same time!
  4. The Cobra pose starts by lying on your stomach.  Place your hands under your shoulders, at the side of your chest.  Push your arms straight up, lifting your torso off the floor.  Keep your hips down, your tummy and chest lifted and your shoulders relaxed down.  Hold for 15-30 seconds.  Repeat 2x. Can you make a hissing sound last the entire 15-30 seconds while you’re holding this pose?
  5. Start the Child’s pose on your hands and knees.  Spread your knees wide and draw your feet together.  Now sit your hips back onto your heels.  Allow your forehead to rest on the floor if you can. Reach your arms straight out in front of your head.  Hold for 15-30 seconds.

 

7 – You’re all done so make sure you hydrate and hug it out (insert high five or fist pump depending on your child.) Be sure to replace the fluids in your body and quench your thirst.

Lastly, for extra fun and to add variety, try dressing up in tutus, tiaras or cat costumes, blowing up a few balloons to play with while you dance, making it a video party, or dancing together outside!

Get creative and feel free to add in yoga moves, gymnastics moves, a dance-off or an acro-balancing move.

Hope this gets you moving, making fun memories and dancing together starting this St. Patrick’s Day!

 

 



March 13, 2019by Coombsie860

By Joanne Taylor

I wanted to share a recent fun and inspiring experience I shared with my nine and a half year old super athletic, hockey playing, multi-sport loving son.

The moms were given the chance to try cavewoman training alongside their elite hockey players (set up by the hockey organization of the Scarborough Young Bruins at New Frontier Fitness.)

The team works with Jason at New Frontier Fitness regularly but this was my first time witnessing the focus and determination of my son and his teammates.

I wasn’t sure how I would do but, like the other enthusiastic moms, I was ready to try and rock the physical challenges. My goal was to share an activity he’s passionate about and not aggravate my previously injured shoulder.

Jason, the owner and trainer, quickly organized four stations for eight determined moms and ten young athletes. He had the perfect calm yet enthusiastic approach; he challenged each of us with not only a full body workout on each circuit but a mental workout too. I found Cavewoman training (or Caveman for those guys out there) was perfect for all the varying fitness levels of the moms and we all had a great, if not sweaty time.

Best of all, I’ll never forget how my son looked with a big grin on his face as he watched me participate in a wide range of exercise including ropes, boxing, resistance ropes and weights.

I marveled at how my son and his friends excelled not only in their focus at each station but also in their determination to complete each timed circuit. They encouraged one another, at times joked around, and obviously enjoyed the comments, and encouragement of Jason.

They also seemed to enjoy having us moms around to shout “Go, Mom go!” at as they raced past us doing our warm up laps.

Having a young athlete in the house is one of the driving forces in my day-to-day life; ensuring a creative, happy home, providing a super healthy diet for him and his siblings, and encouraging not only good but great and necessary sleeping habits.

I loved the chance to exercise along with him, the awesome hockey moms, his friends, and teammates.

A big shout out to Jason at New Frontier Fitness and a warm thank you for the opportunity to the Scarborough Young Bruins (SYB 2009) organization.

NFF – Website: https://www.newfrontierfitness.ca

NFF – Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/newfrontierfitness/

SYB – Website: http://scarboroughyoungbruins.com


Thank you Joanne for sharing your wonderful fitness experiences with us!  Very inspiring.



May 15, 2018by Coombsie860

~ I am so happy to have this guest post by my friend Joanne Taylor.  She is a mom of 3, writer, underwater photographer, and make up artist.  She and her family visited Disney this year and wanted to give you all some awesome fitness tips for surviving the boot camp that is Disney.  To connect with Joanne or read more of her work please visit www.facebook.com/joanneswriting or www.underwaterphotographyforkids.wordpress.com .  Enjoy the post! ~

 

Disney Boot Camp 
By: Joanne Taylor

Having just returned from Disney World, Florida with my husband, double-stroller, three kids (8, 5 and 2) plus our two suitcases and four carry-ons, I’ve had my share of physical challenges outside of a gym.
Disney World is notorious for fun and physical exercise. The Magic Kingdom alone is 107 acres and it will kick your butt – not to mention the walk from the Disney transportation to the park gates or any of the other Disney parks (Epcot, Animal Kingdom and Hollywood Studios.)
We had ten days of park passes and did a park a day. In the process, my husband and I did get injuries. Our feet hurt, our backs and arms hurt and I pulled a muscle in a shoulder while trying to get my youngest down from a gate.
I admit we did run to catch buses, to make it for some of our fast passes and we did run after one or more of our children to catch them and I admit we did carry some tired kids because sometimes even a double stroller isn’t big enough!
But lucky for you, and thanks to Alison for letting me contribute, you can avoid some of our injuries.
I’ve jotted down some suggestions for you to focus on the fun and continue to be physically at your best.
First of all, remember, Disney World is a marathon, not a sprint, although the first day was a busy one trying to keep up with our kids level of energy.
My suggestions to take care of your body while having so much fun start here and I’ve listed ten of them.
1 – Hydrate! Avoid cramps by drinking lots of water.
2 – Stretch before you go in the morning and stretch again before bed. Your body will thank you! Don’t forget to massage those toes and rub some cream on your heels.
3 – Stretch while you’re in lines. Take advantage of long lineups to stretch your backs, arms, legs and feet.
4 – Eat healthy! Try dried fruit high in antioxidants at the new Pandora section of Animal Kingdom – the one with dried kiwi in is super yum), edamame (yes, edamame!! They sell them at a snack bar in Animal Kingdom) and pizza (try La Nampoli at Epcot – I had the white pizza with melon on top) or even yummy ice cream shakes in Hollywood Studios.
5 – Time your caffeine. Have it early so you get a good night sleep for the next day because you’re going to need it!
6 – Use eye drops to keep your eyes happy and lubricated because they will get tired too.
7 – Alternate the side you hold your children on to avoid muscle strain.
8 – Bring an anti-inflammatory cream for aching joints and apply after a warm shower at the end of a fun day
9 – Take care of your feet by wearing comfortable shoes and wear insoles if you need them.
10 – Like any holiday – relax. Tense moments will come and go so make sure you relax your body between them. The most frequent tense moments happened over little ones crying over a toy in the gift shop. Remember it’s ok, it happens all the time and the best thing to do (quoting Elsa) is to “Let it go.”