suspected that regular physical fitness plays a role in the
health of the brain. And now, a new study published in the
journal Frontiers in Human Neuroscience strongly suggests that
kids who are more active and physically fit do better in
to the study, "Aerobic fitness plays an important role in
the brain health of children, especially in terms of brain
structure and brain function. These fitness-related
differences in brain health are often coupled with performance
differences, such that more highly-fit children have been
shown to outperform their lower-fit peers on tasks of
cognitive control and memory as well as scholastic achievement
tests in classroom."
If kids are going to be all that they are meant to be, both
physically and cognitively, then they need to be physically
fit. It makes sense. As human beings we are naturally designed
for movement, and children in general (and boys in particular)
really need that daily physical engagement.
why I advocate that kids need more recess, not less, and gym
should be a daily part of the K-12 curriculum. At home,
children should receive at least another hour of free play to
ride their bikes, hit the playground, play some ball or jump
rope on the sidewalk. And, guess what? Thereís still time to
get the homework, violin and dance lessons in, especially
since, according to the Nielsen Co., American children watch
between 28 to 32 hours of television per week.
you think itís absurd that we allow our children to watch
this much TV? Isnít it obvious that television takes kids
away from important things like exercise, play, homework,
reading for pleasure or perhaps learning an instrument?
more insidious is the dangerous influence of the thousands of
TV commercials consumed by our children, leaving them passive
and vulnerable to an unconscious assault on their brains and
bodies. If thatís not enough, for decades it has been well
documented that children who watch a lot of television are
more likely to be overweight, exercise infrequently (if at
all), have poorer grades and fail to read at grade level.
a doubt, this new study should convince parents, educators,
policymakers and politicians that kids need to climb trees,
hang out on the monkey bars, jump off the steps, horseplay,
wrestle and partake in snowball fights.
benefit their brains as well as their bodies.