Fitness

Why active kids do better in school

Author: Canadian Living

Fitness

Why active kids do better in school

This story was originally titled "Active Kids Score Better in School" in the October 2009 issue. Subscribe to Canadian Living today and never miss an issue!

If you want your kids to excel in school, head out to the playground. Sound crazy? Not so, says Active Healthy Kids Canada. "Time spent getting active in school, on the playground or in a park can improve learning," says Dr. Mark Tremblay, the organization's chief scientific officer. Its 2009 Report Card on Physical Activity for Children and Youth found that kids who took part in a school health initiative that included physical activity had a 36 per cent increase in their reading abilities and a 24 per cent improvement in math scores over a two-year period.

The study also found that only 13 per cent of kids get the recommended 90 minutes of physical activity a day and, what's more, 90 per cent of our kids spend too much time in front of television and computer screens. The report's authors emphasize that active video gaming "is not a replacement for physical activity" because it doesn't require the same levels of energy expenditure, nor does it offer the same opportunities as outdoor play.

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Why active kids do better in school

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