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6 Tips to Stay Active This Winter

Key points

  • Whether indoors or outdoors, be as active as possible during the winter months—and have fun!
  • Get started today with our six tips to stay active all winter.
Two people walking in the snow wearing scarves and jackets.


The winter season can be a challenging time to stay active, with colder temperatures, slippery conditions, and fewer daylight hours. But staying physically active is one of the best ways to improve your mental and physical health and keep on track with your fitness goals.

Physical activity can help you sleep better and reduce anxiety. Regular physical activity also helps:

  • Improve your balance.
  • Lower your risk of type 2 diabetes and many kinds of cancer.
  • Strengthen bones and muscles.
  • Lower blood pressure.
  • Maintain or lose weight.
  • Keep your mind sharp as you get older.

Emerging research also suggests physical activity may help boost your immune function.

See additional benefits of physical activity.

Two people in a snowy park. One is pushing the other in a wheelchair.
Regular physical activity is one of the most important things you can do for your health.

How much physical activity do you need?‎

Experts recommend that adults get at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity a week. Many activities count, such as walking, running, or wheelchair rolling. You can break that up into smaller amounts, such as 22 minutes daily, 30 minutes on 5 days a week, or what works for your schedule. It all counts.

Six tips to stay active during winter

Take nature walks

Weather permitting, schedule time during the day to enjoy nature. Take a stroll around a safe neighborhood or park.

Monitor the weather and plan ahead

Weather forecasts give several days' notice to prepare your week. Be sure to monitor the weather, dress appropriately, and plan your winter activity accordingly.

Wear layers

Wear several layers of comfortable clothing so that items can be removed easily as you become warmer. Layers will help guard against overheating, sweating, and eventually becoming colder.

Workout online

Consider tuning into a TV, online, live Zoom, or Instagram workout class. Find free or low-cost exercise videos online to help you do aerobics, dance, stretch, and build strength.

Do some chores

When bad weather keeps you from going outside, look for ways to be physically active indoors. Housework such as vacuuming, sweeping, and cleaning all count towards your physical activity goals. And you'll knock out some items on your to-do list while gaining health benefits. Walking or running up and down stairs in your home can be a great workout, too.

Volunteer in active ways

Help others while helping yourself. Look for volunteer opportunities that involve physical activity, such as walking dogs for elderly neighbors or shoveling snow.

Active People, Healthy Nation. Creating an Active America, Together.

Want additional tips and resources to be active?
Learn about Active People, Healthy NationSM, CDC’s national initiative to help people be more physically active.