Commit to be fit...for your kids, for yourself

Have you ever seen a talk show episode that featured overweight kids? I personally hate watching those stories because they just break my heart.

There are, of course, the "shocker stories" - like the 3-year-old little girl who died from obesity in 2004. But there are many other "every-day" stories that are equally saddening.

It always makes me upset when I see kids that are grossly overweight and - yes - I do blame the parents. Part of a parent's "job" is to model healthy behaviors and to create "boundaries." 

woman runningAs parents, we need to be diligent about fostering an environment that nurtures good health. We need to turn off the TV, to go on family walks, to cook up healthy meals, and to kick the McDonalds habit. We need to sign up for family 5Ks, to challenge each other to competitions on Wii Fit, to put out fresh fruit as an after-school treat, and to quit buying processed foods. We need to get our bottoms off the couch and out in the fresh air. For the sake of our kids. And ourselves. [Did you know that obese people are less likely to get married, more likely to get divorced, and have lower incomes than their leaner counterparts?]. 

Aqua-Leisure is one company that understands this. AL is a family-owned company based in Massachusetts whose mission is to "provide fun, safe, and innovative recreational products for the entire family to enjoy." From jumpropes to kid-sized treadmills to aquatic products, they carry items that encourage fitness from the start. Their products are all about having fun and creating family past times that revolve around activity.

Check out these fun products from AL's First Fitness line:

deluxe digi-jump rope aqua leisureDeluxe Digi-Jump Rope





deluxe 19pc obstacle course aqua leisureDeluxe 19pc. Obstacle Course





fun activity tumbler aqua leisureFun Activity Tumbler





play parachute aqua leisurePlay Parachute





Aqua-Leisure products are geared to kids (birth to age 12) and are sold at a variety of retailers including, Target, Toys R Us, and Walmart.

YOUR TURN: What does your family do to stay active?

WIN IT! One winner will receive his/her choice of any of the products listed above. To enter, leave a comment on this post stating what product(s) from the Aqua-Leisure's First Fitness line look fun/appealing to you prior to Sunday, February 1 at midnight (Don’t forget to follow the rules…all generic comments like “Enter me!,” “Love it,” and “Cool stuff!” will be disqualified.). * Winner must provide a U.S. mailing address.

*UPDATE* The winner is #26 Heather H. Congratulations!

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132 comments on “Commit to be fit...for your kids, for yourself”

  1. I sooooo love the Kid's First Air Walker! This would be such a great way to inspire exercise in even the most die hard non~active kid! : )))

    And, how do we stay active? We don't own a television and love playing outside! : )))

    Thanks so much for this fabulous give~away! : )))


  2. Thank You for the interesting facts this looks so fun I just loved the little dumbell set and also
    love the hop balls they are a blast great site for kids workouts thanks

  3. My kids would really love the parachute. I take them to story time at our library and that's one of their favorite things to play with there.

  4. My daughters and I do workout DVDs together. We also take walks together. The Digi-Jump Rope would be very challenging to keep trying to jump more.

  5. My family is very active basically because my daughter is always on the move! She enjoys dancing, swimming, riding her bike, etc. so hopefully she will continue to be this active as she gets older. The Fun Activity Tumbler looks like a lot of fun, especially since we have a backyard!

  6. I really like the 26" Jumbo Hop Ball! We like to take walks together, but that is harder to do when it is cold outside!

  7. A few of the products I liked were the Lil’ Contender Boxing and the Kid’s First Air Walker. We live up north and are trapped inside for many months and those both look like items that kids could use to have fun and exercise. I have nver seen the line of products before, I am really impressed. We stay active by playing outside in the backyard, in the winter they seem to burn off alot of energy running thru the house (and driving me crazy).

  8. My kids are all pretty active. My 13 yr old has her black/brown belt in kuk sool won, she's been dancing since she was 3 yrs old and does a lot of community work thru project STREAM so that keeps her busy as well. My boys both play soccer, do kuk sool too and are just active boys who love to ride bikes, ride scooters, etc. My husband and I could stand to get in shape however, lol, but it's obvious we've fallen to the wayside after becoming parents. Prior to parenthood we were very active!!

    I love all the giveway items really, i think the kids would have a ball with them!

  9. I like the Kid’s First Exercise Bike. I've never seen an exercise bike for kids. What a fun idea! I would like to win the parachute (my son loves these) or the obstacle course.
    My son participates in lots of activities to stay active: swimming lessons; nordic skiing; and baseball. We try to have something for every season. In summer, we ride our bikes and hike on the trails near our home.

  10. As a former teacher, children absolutely love the brightly colored parachute for interactive play together. It invites cooperation and laughter.

  11. The play parachute and the obstacle course both look like they would be a lot of fun. We try to do outdoor activities like hiking and biking and playing ball as much as we can to stay in shape.

  12. We've been surprisingly successful at "keeping with it" in using the Wii Fit we got just after Christmas -- and even managing to lose a decent amount of weight, too! All four items pictured above look interesting, but I'm leaning toward the obstacle course or the play-parachute -- a bit easier to get some group-play going! Thanks

  13. I like the obstacle course a lot. It encourages activity plus it can be used to challenge the child by using a timer system to perform the activities. Thank you!

  14. I have 3 young boys. We try to stay very active. I love these tools, especially the obstacle course. We love to play on the Wii as a family, take walks outside, go to the park, play mini golf inside, dance, and of course wrestling is big fun with my boys.

  15. My girls would love the parachute! My husband is a PE teacher so we "borrow" one of his 6' ones from school for playdates sometimes and they could play with it for hours. My biggest challenge is the winter (we have had over 120 inches of snow so far this year) so most of our play is indoors. We have set up our basement as a mini gym with bowling, tee ball, a basketball hoop, tons of balls and the girls' bikes. I keep my stationary bike down there too so I can workout while they burn off some energy!

  16. I like the Junior Cheerleader but it will be a long time before she can use that. So, for right now the obstacle course, and the parachute would be great. We love gymboree gym calsses and tumbling class at the YMCA to keep our daughter healthy. Along with story time and music classes for her mind and body.

  17. Wow! What great products! I really like the Play Parachute and the Obstacle Course set. We try very hard to stay active as a family by canoeing, hiking, and playing various games.

  18. My middle daughter and I walk a mile each Spring, Summer, Fall evening. It is a special time for each of us and we've noticed we have been putting on some hibernation weight lately!

  19. We like to take walks to keep active. In the winter, I like to take the kids to Mcdonalds play land and let them run around for awhile!

  20. Wow! How do I pick just one? The obstacle course stuff looks like something my kids would use a lot. I also like the parachute and the 40" play ball. Fun stuff!

  21. when I was a child I just couldnt get enough of the activity parachutes!! I have 4 mostly young children myself

  22. Wow! I think my kids would have a ball with that Fun Activity Tumbler :D Right now to stay active my kids play Wii games (they actually sweat!), ride bikes and even run on the treadmill with me because I workout almost everyday.

  23. My favorite is the Winter Wonderland snow gear, and my family does NOTHING to stay active. Thanks for the giveaway!

  24. Oh my many of their items look so cool!!! I'd have to say, though, that I'm on this kick lately about keeping my children safe when in/around water (a friend's baby almost drowned in their bathtub a few months ago), so one of the flotation suits would be awesome!

  25. My kids would have a blast with the fun activity tumbler. They play on a basketball league to stay in shape. At home, they do the elliptical and stair master and ride their bikes when the weather is good.
    Thanks for the giveaway!

  26. well the activity tube runner sounds great, because that way you'd can watch them tumble and run around, instead of watching barney on tv, 18 times a day, on re-runs, outside activities are good for our children~

  27. With video games and movies it's so hard to get kids now days out and out of the house to do something active. I love the activity tumbler. That looks like it would be a lot of fun and since we have a huge yard it would give them a fun reason to go outside and get some exercise.

  28. The fun activity tumbler would be a Huge hit!~Our family goes to a local park that has a 1.5 bark dust trail around it. We run.

  29. In warmer weather we go for walks or run around outside in the backyard. In the winter I just put on the radio and dance with the kids, very fun!

  30. I love the obsctacle course set. We are always making obstacle courses with misc toys in our back yard. We get a lot of exercise as a family with weekly hikes and outings and our YMCA membership. We stay active and our kids learn by our example.

  31. The Fun Activity Tumbler looks like something the kids would have alot of fun with. We always take the kids to play ball at the park.

  32. Excelent giveaway; With recess in school shortened and some completely gone and PE only once a week, kids need more fun ways to be active daily. The kids would love this. Thanks

  33. I really like the obstacle course because everyone can use it and it can be arranged differently each time you use it.

    To stay active, we take our boys on hikes in the woods and let them film our adventures.

  34. I would definitely like the Fun Activity Tumbler. I'd donate it to the school I teach at for the Sensory Room, which is for our special needs children.

  35. I wish I had known about these products before Christmas! They're great! We'd love any of them, but especially the obstacle course.

  36. I love the Fun Activity Tumble, that's just awesome and the Lil’ Contender Boxing set would be fun to have to. I teach preschool so these would be great to keep the kids active on days we cant go outdoors.

  37. My kids love doing obstacle courses so the Deluxe 19pc. Obstacle Course would be a lot of fun for our family. We really do try to be outside playing as much as we can. Whether it be swimming, biking, playing on our Plasma Cars, we are moving. It seems like as a parent, I have to be more involved today than my parents ever were, but that's my job as a parent to keep my kids healthy.

  38. Kid’s First Air Walker is very cool. We walk everyday -- to the playground or just to say hello to the dogs.

  39. Wow- what a great variety. I had no idea some of these activities were even out there! I have 4 very active children! Their favorites were the Fun Activity Tumbler coming in first. Second place went to the Play Parachute and third was the Tug-o-War! Thanks for this chance!

  40. The Deluxe 19pc. Obstacle Course sounds like something that we can even join the kids in doing. This is so wonderful, making being fit, fun. Thanks so much.

  41. I think the Obstacle Course looks fabulous and I love it's versatility for lots of games/activities. Hubby and I have both committed to being more fit, both for ourselves and so that we can enjoy our time with J to the fullest, and stick around as long as possible for her. Oh - AND keep up with her. Hee! :-)

  42. They have great products! I love the 1/2 lb and 1 lb weights, my son is ALWAYS trying to lift my weights and I'm afraid he's going to hurt himself!

    I hadn't heard the story about the 3 year old that died, so sad =(

    autumn398 (at)

  43. Wow - I would love the obstacle course. Mikayla is alwasy asking - Mommy can we set up an ostacle course - a big big big one!

    I am very active and I love to see Mikayla ask to go running with me (she is 3 1/2!), do yoga with me or just strenght train - she is willing to try everything.

    The past 2 years we have entered her in a 1K fun run. There are times now when she kicks it into gear that I have to try hard to keep up with those little legs - the other day she did almost a mile of straight running on her own free will!

  44. For my 3 year old the parachute is a winner. We've played with them at church activities and he always loves it. We would have to invite the neighborhood kids and the cousins to share the fun!

  45. I love the play parachute. I worked at a YMCA summer day camp this past summer and the kids loved playing with that thing. It never got old. You can do so many fun things with it like bounce a ball on it or even adapt it for really hot days by spraying it with water and getting the kids all wet.

  46. Everyday my son and I go outside to play, except when its rainy. Even if it is only for 30 minutes, due to temps in the teens/20's in the winter. Hubby and I like to go hiking and we pack our son in the backpack carrier.
    I'd like to win the parachute. It would be great for playdates.

  47. You know I'm all over this. My kids are 5 and 2 and they really can't jump rope yet. So we work on just plain jumping, hoping, skipping, sliding. To work on their coordination.
    As a family we bike, run, ski, to name just a few.

  48. Really cute stuff! I try to keep active, but the weather we have been having (we are LUCKY if it gets to 25 these days) has made it difficult to get outdoors. I've been having lots of indoor chasing and ticking with my son!

    I think the tumbler would be the winner for son is too young now, but not for long!

  49. I'm torn! I remember how absolutely fun the parachute was in elementary school gym class. I always got so excited when the gym teacher would pull that puppy out! I'd love to have one to play with on a summer day with my guy. I'd have to recruit other kids from the neighborhood too, to make it more fun. So it'd be a social toy too!

    But that tumbler looks fun though!

  50. I love the Lil Rookie soccer set! I can totally see us all playing that in the backyard - it will be a lot better then using the swingset as our goal as we do now. Of the ones you are giving away, I think the obstacle course would be our favorite. We do lots of "chasing" type games and they love anything that makes them run and pant.

  51. Stephanie-
    I think it's extra tough for moms in colder climates (like ours in MN) to stay fit. But I was pleased to see that Minneapolis was recently listed as the third most fit city in the country. We have to make a little more effort but it's all worth it. My husband and I join an inexpensive gym in the winter that provides childcare. It also has a pool with open swim for the kiddos on Saturdays. On Tuesdays I go to a community ed class with my son that allows him to run around in a gym with lots of slides and balls. And on those days when it is above zero we go outside and do some old-fashioned snowman-building or sledding.

    Although I won't be able to use it until the snow melts, I love the obstacle course kit! At 2 1/2 I think my son would really enjoy that this summer.

  52. I think my kids would love the parachute! They're both pretty young and so it would be really fitting for them and would allow them to run in and out of it. Reminds me a lot of my school days when we played with the parachute - it was always one of my favorite activities. I would love for my kiddos to get to enjoy one too.

  53. I was clicking through our Comcast On Demand Kids shows, and found a Fitness section. They had an Australian Adventure YogaLand video, and by golly, my kids (age 2 and 4) loved it! They sat there for the deep breathing, and they kangaroo jumped, and they stretched like a shark, and it was adorable! I am a minor fitness junkie, so I hope they see how important it is to me. I LOVE that obstacle course set from Aqua Leisure (although something similar could be created with stuff at home)!

  54. Hi! With the weather getting warmer, we have been taking family walks. We have a 3mile path marked out in our neighborhood, and we try to walk it 3-5 times per week.
    All of the products you listed here look great! We'd love to have the obstacle course or the tumbler. Thanks for hosting such a great contest!!!

  55. All of those items look like so much fun! I think my son would be able to enjoy the tumbler the most, though. We've jumped rope together -- or rather, we tried. I think he's still too young for that. Love the obstacle course!

  56. the obstacle course- anything to get those kids movin in wisconsin winters! We go on bear hunts imaginary of course as well as jumping on the mini trampoline this winter

  57. I love the kid's first exercise bench - perfect for exercising and stregthening those little arms and legs and how adorable too! I'd choose the Play Parachute:)

  58. I think my daughter would really enjoy the Deluxe Digi-Jump Rope. I would love to use my own jump rope and jump right along with her. We live in the city so I don't see us having much room for the other great things (very small yard) but the jump rope would be perfect.

  59. We take the occasional family walk, go to the park to play, and jump and dance and run in the house. Fun preschool games like red light green light, freeze dance, and other games keep the kiddos moving. We recently got a Wii and the Wii fit, too, and that keeps Blondie exercising some more without even realizing it. As for the items from Aqua-Leisure, oh my goodness they're great! Although the fun activity tumbler looks super fun, I think we would get the most use out of the obstacle course. Thanks! :)

  60. We take a lot of walks but I must admit that I am not a great fitness role model for the kids. I have always been pretty sedentary so it takes a lot for me to get out and be active for them but I am trying! We have the parachute and the kids love it. I think the obstacle course look cool but they would lose all the pieces instantly, so I would probably choose the Fun Activity Tumbler. They would both have a blast in the yard with that this spring/summer!

  61. I agree with you. Parents are responsible, when their children are young, for the child's diet. My children are invovled in sports to stay active. My older daughter tore her ACL and hasn't been able to exercise. She told me that she is realizing how much exercise is part of her life. She misses it.
    The obstacle course looks like alot of fun. We would be able to change things around to make it fun and interesting. Great giveaway!!

  62. Looks like a lot of great products. It's challenging to stay active in the winter - I bring in lots of our outdoor toys, like the slide, and the boys bikes, to help keep them busy & active when it's too cold to get out. For that reason, toys like the Obstacle Course set, that could be used inside as well as out, really appeal to me.

  63. The fun activity tumbler looks like a lot of fun. I have four boys, and they are all rough and tumble and love to be outside. It's hard in the winter, but we go to the church gym for play group and are considering a membership at our local YMCA. My husband and I both struggle with our weight, and don't want our kids to have to do the same, so we are very aware of their activity levels and try to encourage it.

  64. Amen to that!! I cringe when I see obese children, and I completely blame their parents. Our children learn from us, and we are responsible for their health.
    All the fitness toys look so cool, but I've really been wanting a play parachute. They are so great for parties and church activities.

  65. the treadmill and exercise bench are too fun! :) I'd love to win any of these, because my best friend is asking for outdoor play things for her little boy's upcoming birthday! Thank you!

  66. I think my girls would love any of these... I think my pick would be the fun activity tumbler! Thanks for the chance!!

    We stay incredibly busy around here in general. I find that not turning on the television really sets the tone for creativity and activity.

  67. The Fun Activity Tunnel would be really great. I could see the grandkids being very active with that. Also love the kids treadmill. Thank you!

  68. My husband and I aren't really that active besides playing with our Wii Fit. But hopefully after the birth of our son, we will get more exercise and be more active by taking him outside often. We live about 3 blocks from a park so that's very convenient for us! I'd love for him to grow up riding his bike, playing baseball, etc.

    The Fun Activity Tumbler looks like a lot of fun! It'll be awhile before my son could use that but his cousins would enjoy it!

  69. Actually this is something I think about constantly since I am obese myself and have two toddlers. I feel it more as they get older and though they show no signs of being overweight now it is always a fear that looms in the back of my mind.
    I have recently been getting more information and trying harder myself because I know I want to set a good example and I also want to be somebody they can look up to and be proud to call their mother.
    I have been reading labels like crazy looking up healthy recipes online. Also paying attention to serving sizes is really important.
    Since it is winter it is harder to stay active than it is in the summer but I usually chase the girls around or we turn on music and dance(they love this) or they help me clean around the house. I take them outside once in a while but they usually only stay out for about 10 minutes before they get too cold and want to go in. (Long enough to make some snow angels, have a snow ball fight and bury them in the snow.)
    In the summer I plan on walking my 3 yr old to school and back and taking them to the park near our house.
    I loved that play parachute it looks like something they would have a blast with. I was actually looking to see if they had some kind of trampoline, because she loves the baby trampoline they have at her preschool and she loves the big ones at some of her friends houses. They both like throwing balls around too and they have one of those bouncers and they love it.
    The only thing I really worry about with her is how much she wants to play on the computer. She loves and there is another site with holly hobby games she likes to play. It is always a fight to get he off but if she throws a fit I just give her a time out and after about ten minutes she will be fine and will say she feels better.

  70. The activity tumbler looks like fun. Do they have one in my size? Also, I was thinking that if my kids had the Exercise Bike, maybe I'd get on my own more often.

  71. I grew up being super active, just playing in the backyard, swimming, riding bikes. we were ALWAYS outside! I remember setting up obsticle courses with all sorts of random things from our back yard. I'd love to inspire my little one to do the same with the obstacle course set. He loves to run and squeel - it'd be perfect!

  72. ugh, that makes me so sad about that little girl. I just don't even understand it, kids want to be active by nature!

    We stay active by running and jumping everywhere we go. My oldest does lunges with me while my little one screams "Exsize, exsize!"

    We play football, soccer, and just about any other ball sport out there.

    I'm exhausted! :)

    I think my kids would love the obstacle course.

  73. We walk to school everyday--or take the scooter. This gives me at least 4 miles (I go up and back) of walking. We always try to walk whenever we can. From First Fitness I like the play parachute.

    And this month I am devoting the entire month to family fitness at my blog, MOMTREDS. I've got more than $600 worth of giveaways plus exclusive interviews. I even nabbed 30 minutes with Gabby Reece!

  74. I try and take my daughter running with me (her in the jogging stroller) and then we follow up our runs with playing at the park. We also do laps and exercises in the backyard on the grass and chase our dogs. She loves it! And I love these products. Although my little girl isn't very old, I try and buy her things that she can use outside in the backyard (for birthday and Christmas) to further encourage her being active and outdoors!

  75. To get exercise as a family we take weekly trips to the park and walk the trails before playing on the playground. What cool kid's products. My son would love the jumbo hop ball!

  76. the air walker is so cute! i love the elliptical machine when i can't train and run outdoors, so i know my daughter would get a kick out of it, too! thanks!

  77. I like the 26" play ball. My kids love playing with my mom's yoga ball - - this would be a huge hit!
    musesofmegret (at) gmail (dot) com

  78. I completely agree. My mom is a nutritionist and works in the peds dept of her hospital. It's scary some of the stories she has, and so many of them (not all, but A LOT) are directly related to idiot parents. I dont like to be harsh, but it really is true. Makes me very sad, and yes, mad. In our family, we like to run, hike, my husband is a huge cyclist... pretty much anything outdoors. I think that's the key, get outside. :)

    Loved the store - there was a lot to browse. I always wanted a Crocodile Ride-On toy for pool time when I was little. But I've got my eye on the obstacle course you listed above - too cool!

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