Based on Centers for Disease Control and SHAPE America guidelines and research that highlights the relationship between fitness and academic development, IHT focuses on exercise at an elevated heart rate as the key physical education metric to improve student cardiovascular fitness.
Academic research shows conclusively that exercise at an elevated heart rate correlates to increased longevity, improved cognitive performance, and self-regulation and classroom functioning among children. The following studies provide each demonstrate the benefits that exercise – and exercise at an elevated heart rate – have on student development:
- Ulrik Wisløff study concluding that even a single weekly bout of exercise at high intensity reduces the risk of cardiovascular death;
- Shih-Chun Kao study linking academic and cognitive improvement to both aerobic and muscular fitness; and
- April Bowling research finding that exercise at an elevated heart rate delivers benefits to students with complex behavioral disorders.