Exercise for mothers hasn't been confined to Jane Fonda-style aerobics classes for a while now -- and we can all breathe a sigh of relief for that. Plenty of moms not only stay involved in the sports they excelled at in high school or university, but many take up new challenges too, in the form of rock climbing, yoga and even marathons.
It's not just in Mom's best interest to be receiving some stellar fitness equipment either. Studies have shown that children of active mothers are twice as likely to be active as those with inactive mothers, and with the current concerns about childhood obesity, this isn't a part of our lives we can ignore.
Of course, we know giving gifts in any way associated with weight loss can be a little dicey, so while all of these options are stylish and plain old cool, be sure to deliver them with the most important message: "We love you just the way you are, Mom."
For: The getting-back-into-shape mom
Why: The seriously challenging 12-DVD set of workouts (and accompanying workout journal) could be used by anyone who wants a 30 to 45 minute workout right at home. Varying levels of difficulty for each exercise means they can used over and over again -- and the targeted body areas are something every woman would love.
Up To Speed
For: The marathon-training mom
What: Adidas' MiCoach Speed Cell, $79.99, SportChek
Why: This gadget sits inside your shoe and evaluates average pace, maximum speed, distance covered and idle time -- basically, anything a runner training for a big race wants to know to stay competitive.
For: The loving-the-juice-trend mom
What: Breville's BJE510XLJuicer, currently $189.99, Future Shop
Why: Creating natural juices from fruit is gaining in popularity for those interested in health and wellness, and this model boasts being able to juice three apples in three seconds. Plus, it'll look pretty sleek on the counter.
For: The queen-of-quick-breaks mom
What: Canyon Ranch's Strong & Sculped DVD, $16.99, Amazon
Why: It's easy to get sick of workout DVDs, but this one from the folks at renowned spa Canyon Ranch has three segments that are only 20-minutes long -- not nearly enough time to start hating them. They're meant to be done on their own or added to a workout routine as the strength component, a great alternative for moms who hate weights.
For: The long-haired mom
Why: Workout gear doesn't get too many accessories, but headbands are the only thing that can provide both colour and utility. This particular option offers UV protection and anti-bacterial properties, keeping hair out of the eyes when mom is running, playing tennis or doing yoga.
For: The swimming mom
What: Heatwave Monokini, $98, Lululemon
Why: Sleek and boasting a fabric that protects from the sun's rays, this bathing suit is not only cute to wear on the beach, it's adjustable in both the back and the straps to ensure it stays put during Mom's laps.
No Slip Sliding
For: The hot-yoga-loving mom
What: PROlite yoga mat, $72, Manduka
Why: Not all yoga mats are created equal, and Manduka is known for the high quality and attention to eco-friendliness in all their products. This particular mat is lightweight and particularly suited for hot yoga and Vinyasa Flow classes.
For: The long distance mom
What: MEC Pace 200 Waist Pack, $29.50, Mountain Equipment Co-Op
Why: Any mom who's going the distance on the paths knows finding a water fountain isn't always viable -- plus, this adorable pouch can hold keys, a phone and money (just in case a cab is looking better than the run home).
For: The biking mom
What: Ride On Short, $88, Lululemon
Why: If Mom wants to find something between teeny tiny bike shorts and the padded ones that feel slightly like a diaper, these stretchy, slim-fitting options will be just the ticket -- and it doesn't hurt that they're pretty adorable.
For: The work-out-in-front-of-the-TV mom (who can take a joke)
What: Shake Weight, $19.95
Why: Immortalized by South Park's vicious sense of humour, the Shake Weight claims it can tone arms in six minutes a day. While an exercise regimen would also be needed to help burn fat from arms, doing a little shimmy with the Shake Weight certainly won't be bad for you -- and at the very least, Mom will get a good laugh.
Like A Fish
For: The aqua-aerobics mom
What: Speedo's Aqua Fitness Globe, $29.99, Sporting Life
Why: Sure, they look silly, but they can also result in some seriously toned armed. These gloves, meant to worn while swimming or even just treading water, increase the resistance of water against the arm and build muscle. They also help propulsion through the water.
For: The loves-statistics mom
What: Suunto M4, $160, Mountain Equipment Co-op
Why: This cute-looking personal fitness device packs a lot of punch. It fits like a watch, but gives Mom the chance to choose from three goals -- improving fitness, weight management or free training -- then gives daily instruction for her best workout, showcasing calories, heart rate and then adding on challenges with each passing week.
For: The try-anything-once mom
Why: Barefoot running was all the rage last year, and now the company making the shoes that give that "natural" feel have an option for hiking and trekking. The separated toes are meant to strengthen tootsies, and the sole will keep Mom from slipping.
For: The from-work-to-gym mom
What: Adidas by Stella McCartney's Big Sports Bag, $200, Sporting Life
Why: Because that raggedly backpack she insists on carrying is getting really worn down, and having a bag she loves (complete with a full 10 pockets) will make it easier to carry everything she needs for the whole day.