Children are spending less time moving and more time sitting! This type of sedentary behaviour has a significant impact on the long term health of young people, with hardened arteries and inflammation becoming common in children aged just six years old. Engaging parents and families to ensure children are taking part in active play to develop their physical literacy is vital if we want to flip the increasing trend of children using digital devices instead of moving around.
The government ambition
The childhood obesity plan is the government’s response to the challenge of growing inactivity and physical wellbeing in young people.
The guidelines of the plan detail the responsibility of schools to not only ensure 30 active minutes each day for every child in school, but their responsibility to proactively encourage parental engagement to achieve 30 active minutes outside of the timetabled school day.
Daily physical activity is vital for young people’s cognitive and psycho-social development. Schools have a responsibility to engage parents in ensuring every child has the confidence and competence to move and is included in daily physical activity.
To create a lasting benefit to children’s health, regular movement and reduced sitting time have to become part of the long-term fabric of their day, inside and outside of school and not just restricted to physical education.
The positive impact daily physical activity has on children’s attainment in school has been illustrated by Nike’s ‘Designed to Move’ study (2012), which found that on average active children achieve 33% better than their inactive peers.
DESIGN TO MOVE