HealthBeat: Winter Break Workout

SIOUX FALLS, SD - Kids in the middle of the holiday break might start climbing the walls when the weather turns bad like it is on Thursday.  But it's important for kids to stay physically active when they're on vacation from school.  

When it's wet and cold outside, you'll find plenty of families inside where it's wet and warm.

Perry Groten: What you like to do out here, what's your favorite thing?
Ethan Gugel: The slide.

6-year-old Ethan Gugel is enjoying spending part of his winter break at the Midco Aquatic Center.  Dad, Steve, wanted to make sure Ethan gets out of the house and burns off his pent-up energy that's been building during the holidays.

"Bouncing on the couches, literally climbing the walls because he likes the ninja warrior obstacle training, so anything around the house he can jump off of.  So for our safety more than anything, the house's safety, it's good to get out," Steve Gugel said.

The Midco Aquatic Center has more lifeguards on duty because of an increase in visitors during the holiday break.

"That's always fun to see kids that we maybe haven't seen before or kids that we have seen all summer long and they're stopping in and seeing us again," Recreation Program Coordinator Jean Pearson said.

Time in the pool is a great way to get exercise.  You don't have to be hard-core lap-swimmer or a Michael Phelps-style athlete to feel the effects.

"It's an all-body exercise.  It's a terrific skill to learn and obviously any skill you learn is great, but it's always easier when you're younger," Gugel said.

"If they haven't been swimming in a long time, it doesn't take a long time for them to get a little tired and that's a good thing.  Mom and dad will bring their little ones in early in the morning to burn off some of that energy so that they nap well in the afternoon so everybody's got a strategy it seems.  These moms and dads are pretty creative on how they get their kids tired-out during the day," Pearson said.

Many kids naturally take to water, so it doesn't take much coaxing to get them into the pool, especially for a ninja warrior-in-training like Ethan.

Registration starts Thursday for upcoming swimming lessons at the Midco Aquatic Center.  If you'd like to register your child, click here

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