Physical inactivity proved risky for children and pre-teens

Originally published June 4, 2019 in Science Daily.

Cardio-respiratory capacity in children has dropped by 25% in 20 years, according to a study by the University of Adelaide in Australia.

There are multiple reasons for this, from the social environment and the decreasing number of play areas to a more academic approach towards teaching physical education and the spread of new technologies. But at what age do children lose the desire to exercise?

Researchers from the University of Geneva (UNIGE), Switzerland, followed 1,200 Geneva pupils, aged 8 to 12, for two years. The team found out that from the age of 9, the positive reasons for exercising — it’s fun and good for your health — begin to be replaced by more displaced incentives: to get a good mark or improve your image with others. These results, which are published in the journal Psychology of Sport and Exercise, call for a more detailed analysis of how PE is taught in schools to counter physical inactivity leading to a sedentary lifestyle from an early age. Read More

The key to good mental health? Physical activity

Originally published June 6, 2019 by TES.com.

By Tara Porter

When talking about the importance of ensuring mental health provision in schools, how often do we look to the PE department for answers? It may come as a surprise, but I believe that PE teachers can hold responsibility not just for physical health, but for mental health too.

There is a growing body of research emerging about the positive impact physical activity has on mental wellbeing. Indeed, we might surmise that finding a sport, exercise or some physical activity that young people will love and take part in for life, might be the singular most important thing a school can do to ensure a young person leads a mentally-well life. Read More

Planet Fitness invites teens to workout for free over summer

Originally published May 14, 2019 in the Turlock Journal.

By Angelina Martin

While summertime for most kids means a vacation away from homework, projects and stress, for students who utilize their school’s workout equipment, remaining physically active during the hotter months can be difficult. From now until September, Planet Fitness is challenging students to keep up their healthy habits by giving them a place to workout for free over the break.

Planet Fitness gyms nationwide — including Turlock’s — are inviting high school teenagers between the ages of 15 and 18 to work out free of charge May 15 through Sept. 1 as part of the Teen Summer Challenge Initiative, brought on by a recent online survey conducted by the gym which shows 91 percent of teens want to stay active over the summer. Read More

Exclusive: Survey reveals majority of general public want PE to become core subject in schools

Originally published May 15, 2019 in The Telegraph.

By Jeremy Wilson

A decisive majority of the general public want more physical activity in schools and would support enhancing physical education to core subject status, according to new research commissioned by the Youth Sports Trust.

The major survey of adults, of whom many were parents, demonstrated a clear national belief in the wide-ranging benefits of sport and also only limited support for cutting PE in schools to allow for additional tuition in the three core subjects of English, maths and science. Read More

Colorado school finance bill amended in effort to save two grant programs

Originally published May 2, 2019 in Chalkbeat.

By Sandra Fish

P.E. aficionados will find something to like about the Public School Finance Act, after it picked up a couple of amendments.

The House on Wednesday evening added a small grant program for physical education and another to help reduce the dropout rate to Senate Bill 246. Read More