Researchers from the Medical Research Council Epidemiology Unit in Cambridge and the School of Environmental Sciences at the University of East Anglia recently conducted a study which looked at levels of exercise in various 10 year olds across the UK. Their findings showed that levels dropped by 4.6% over the course of a year and they also commented on the fact that the drop was more significant among girls.
The study involved 844 boys and girls from 92 different schools across the UK. All those involved took part in a ‘speedy’ study which examines sport, physical activity and eating behaviours.
At the beginning of the study 70.4% of pupils met the recommended levels of physical activity, a level which dropped to 65.8% when tested again 12 months later.
The drop was far more noticeable among girls, those with a high level of body fat and those from wealthy back grounds.
Senior cardiac nurse for the British Heart Foundation, Amy Thompson has said this study further highlights the fact that children get too little exercise.
“The benefit of physical activity for all age groups is well established. With levels of obesity in children rising, it is vital that we support children to incorporate regular physical activity into their day to day lives.”
It’s important that parents try to encourage their children to participate in physical activity both in and out of school. There are extra curricular activities to be enjoyed by everybody and even your football hating girlie girl might enjoy trampolining once a week or modern dance classes. Make the idea of physical activity exciting and appealing to children and you may just find that they don’t even argue with you about doing it!