Back-to-school fitness for parents who HATED gym class

If the Presidential Physical Fitness Test made you more anxious than a pop quiz on the War of 1812, these sneaky ways to squeeze are just for you.

  1. Practice for you. Instead of planting it on the sidelines, walk around the perimeter of the soccer field or pace the sidelines when your kid is practicing their sport.
  2. Make popcorn. Offer to work the concession stand for a game (or at least half the game) instead of sitting in the stands.
  3. Work the bleachers. If you really want to amp it up, add a few rounds of walking up and down the bleachers during your walk.
  4. Buy a whistle. Offer to be an assistant coach and help with drills, warmups, and carrying equipment.
  5. Recess monitor. Volunteer to be a recess monitor for the morning or afternoon session but instead of huddling in a corner and chatting with the staff or another parent, walk around the playground, push the kids on the swings or give the merry-go-round a hearty spin.
  6. Gym hero. Assist the gym teacher and help set up and put away equipment. Play with kids and encourage the ones who aren’t fans of gym class.
  7. Chaperone. Volunteer for field trips that require a lot of walking like a museum, nature trail or the zoo.
  8. Get to know the Dewey Decimal System. Volunteer to shelf the books at the library. Get bonus points for removing the books and dusting the shelves.
  9. Be a crossing guard. Keep your kids and the kids in your neighborhood safe by walking the little tykes to school or to the bus stop. Or take turns with other parents and walk with the neighborhood kids.
  10. Walking agenda. Make a motion to walk the first half of the PTA meeting. It might put everyone in a more creative and problem-solving mood.


written by Lisa Marie Conklin. Conklin is a freelance writer who’s work appears in Reader’s Digest, Opeeqo, HealthiNation, MSN, Healthy & Fit, Women’s Health and Fitness, Hope for Women, IDEA Fitness Journal, Taste of Home, Pregnancy, Disney, and Michigan Country Lines


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