StepTember Contest!

The leaves are starting to change, the weather is getting cooler, and kids are back in school, it must be September or as we like to call it, StepTember. With kids being less active during the day its hard to get them motivated to take their extra steps they need to grow big and strong…and smart. GeoPalz is holding a contest for the month of StepTember for the child with the most steps!

Here’s how it will work
Have your kids wear their GeoPalz or Ibitz devices, log/sync their steps, and they are now entered to win a prize at the end of the month. Easy? YES! Now, I’m sure the question is “what will they win?”  Well, they will win a $50 Visa gift card just for taking the most steps!

If you need ideas for getting kids active, make sure to check out our last blog post Kids Are Back In School, But How Do You Keep Them Active?.

Happy Walking!!

Kids are back in school, but how do you keep them active?

With fall approaching us, it means most kids are heading back to school. As we all know, kids are sitting for long hours during the day and tired when they get home. So how can you keep your kids active during the school year? Here are some ideas from the GeoPalz team!

Get kids into after school activities:
In sports, fall means football season is back, basketball season will be starting soon, volleyball is starting back up, and of course the World Series is around the corner. Look at your local rec center or YMCA to see if there is a fall sport your child would like to participate in. While it can take lots of time out of the parents schedule, it does give an opportunity for the kids to be active and find something they love! If they love it, being active won’t feel like such a chore.

Take family walks:
With the weather changing, it isn’t near as hot out in the evening to take nice long family walks. Try to get your steps in as a family in the evening, maybe before homework, so the kids can focus to get their work done. It will give everyone a chance to talk about their day and connect while being active. Find a trail near you or walk through the neighborhood – it doesn’t have to be extensive but more convenient so you keep up with it. If you like to run or bike, take your child with you! Keep them as active and fit as you!

Other activites to keep the kids (and you) active:
• Skateboarding
• Inline Skating
• Running• Hiking• Dancing
• Playing basketball
• Biking
• Swimming
• Jumping rope

Studies have shown that the more active the child is, the better their brainpower. So help them push their minds by keeping them active!

Motivating Kids to Be Active Through Rewards

GeoPalz was started in 2010 after the founders saw their own children spending more and more time engaging in screen time.  They came up with the idea of developing a line of cool looking pedometers, GeoPalz, that would track kids steps and then reward them through their online prize store for those steps, motivating them to be more active.  They have since developed a more sophisticated line of wireless pedometers that track steps and then syncs to an iOS app.  Physical rewards can still be earned but also now kids can earn coins and content on Disney’s Club Penguin within their virtual world.  Parents can also create rewards in the app that are specific to that child or family (ie. 30 minutes of screen time, play time with Mom and/or Dad, a new book, etc.).

The question has been asked…”Should we reward kids for something they should already be doing?”  Unfortunately in this age of advertising and marketing, millions of dollars are spent by companies with colorful, engaging advertising to entice kids (and adults alike) with new games, apps and electronics.  Therefore pedometers like the GeoPalz and ibitz can help families be more mindful of their exercise habits through extrinsic rewards (Club Penguin coins and content, arcade time of our website) changing behaviors that lead to intrinsic rewards of exercise (feeling fit, endorphin high, etc).

Visit our websites geopalz.com and ibitz.com to learn more about the rewards kids can earn with their steps.

Tips for Staying Active in the Heat of the Summer

Summer is a time to get outdoors and be active, be it hiking, biking, running or cooler activities such as swimming but when the temperature reaches above 80 here are some tips to stay safe when working out in the heat.

1.  Drink plenty of water – make sure you’re staying hydrated during intense periods of exercise.

2.  Avoid the heat of the day – exercise earlier in the day or later in the day (after sunset).

3.  Exercise indoors if at all possible and if not try shadier areas.

4.  Wear light, breathable fabrics, visors or a breathable billed cap.

5.  If you feel nauseous, dizzy, crampy or have a headache, stop exercising and get fluids and cool yourself down.

6.  Try a cooler form of exercise like swimming, kayaking or paddle boarding.

According to WebMD when exercising outside water is all you need if you are exercising for less than an hour. For longer exercise periods, sports drinks contain carbohydrate and minerals called electrolytes that may help your endurance and keep you from getting muscle cramps.

 More information and other suggestions can be found at WebMD here.

Thanks to Health Magazine here are some body weight exercises you can do indoors anywhere you are including:

Warrior III pose

Plank variations

Super hero jumps

Swan dives

Crescent kicks

Side crunches and many more.

Whatever you do this summer during the hot days make sure you are protecting yourself and exercising within your limits.  Stay safe and have fun!