Looking for a way to stay svelte this summer that doesn’t involve the gym? A crop of fitness-inspired toys for kids and adults has caught our eye, and we’ve rounded up our faves. Each boasts a stay-active element that promises fitness and fun.
($100; Dick’s Sporting Goods) This twist on the classic court sport involves a net, rackets, and balls, but is portable and set on a smaller scale. The game can be played anywhere with a hard surface, from the park to your patio, provides a good leg, arm, core and cardio workout, and it is a convenient way to train for when you do manage to hit the courts. The kit collapses into an easy-to-store and transport carrying case, so you can take it with you to barbecues, the beach and Grandma’s house.
($630 - $780; bellicon.com) This mini trampoline allows you to experience the hot fitness trend of rebounding at home. Run in place, hop like a kid, do jumping jacks ... even use hand weights if you want to get serious ... to achieve cardio, strength and balance benefits. The Bellicon comes in three sizes, is foldable for easy storage, and is made with bungees instead of springs, which promote smoother and quieter bouncing.
($20 - $30; RingStix.com) Like a hybrid of ring toss and catch, RingStix involves propelling a five-inch plastic ring back and forth between two players wielding pairs of sword-like sticks. With a stick in each hand and the ring over both sticks, players quickly open their arms to send the ring through the air to the other player, who catches it on one or both sticks. The game can be played anywhere, even in the water, since the components float. A glow-in-the-dark ring is even available for night-time play.
($70 - $700; trikke.com) This three-wheeled, stand-up, no-pedals bike, comes in several models, many of which are completely powered by the rider by swaying from side to side to create momentum. Trikke works the entire body, is low-impact and is easier on the back than traditional bicycles. All models are foldable for an easy fit into cars and storage spaces.
($9 - $10; waboba.com) A great toy for the beach, pool or lake, Waboba is a floating polyurathane/Lycra ball that bounces on water like a skipped stone. Waboba can be used in a game of catch ... with a bounce in between the throw and catch ... or keep away. Playing catch in the water requires hand-eye coordination, arm and core strength for throwing and receiving, and lots of leg strength to power yourself through the water.
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