May 23, 2013 |
It's common knowledge that Americans don't get enough exercise - young Americans too. And the Institute of Medicine issued a report on Thursday calling on schools and government at all levels to make sure that all students get an hour a day of “vigorous or moderate-intensity” physical activity. That would be a big change in schools all over the country. The surgeon general has urged all school systems to require 150 minutes per week of physical education; as of 2006, only 3.8% of elementary schools had done so. The report notes that estimates suggest that only half of school age children are getting an hour a day of exercise - in or out of school.
May 21, 2013 |
More physical education in kindergarten through fifth grade means less chance of obesity, especially for boys, researchers say. The study provides some of the first evidence of a causal effect between gym and childhood obesity. It is to be published in the Journal of Health Economics. A number of health organizations, including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, have advocated for increased gym class time as one response to the dramatic rise in childhood overweight and obesity.
March 4, 2013 |
Does the government have a role to play in preventing childhood obesity, helping smokers quit and heading off chronic diseases such as cancer and heart disease? Yes, according to survey results published Monday by the journal Health Affairs. Two health policy experts from Harvard University wanted to find out how the public was responding to what they called “new frontier” public health initiatives aimed at changing consumer behavior, such as New York City's ban on super-sized sodas.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 4, 2013 |
Half a dozen arms reached for the sky, some gently grazing a basketball as it escaped the court and thudded out of bounds at the Edward Roybal Learning Center. Despite their best efforts at trying to keep the ball in the game, both teams showed no hint of defeat, even after one was declared the winner. The Los Angeles Unified School District/Special Olympics Unified Basketball League's Eastern finals were underway, and the mood was decidedly different from that of other sports finals.
December 31, 2012 |
Give kids a break, doctors said Monday - or you might find that they have trouble paying attention in the classroom. In a policy statement released on Monday by the American Academy of Pediatrics' Council on School Health, pediatricians urged schools to maintain regularly scheduled recess, arguing that it offered academic, social and physical benefits for children of all ages, from elementary school kids to adolescents. Even as increased pressure to raise standardized test scores has pushed schools to consider cutting recess, the personal time for kids shouldn't be curbed to make more time for classroom study, they added, noting that, “Ironically, minimizing or eliminating recess may be counterproductive to academic achievement.” For similar reasons, withholding recess also should not be used as a means of punishment, they said.
January 2, 2012 |
Physical education may be disappearing from some schools, but a study finds that kids who engage in sports or physical activity may do better academically. Researchers analyzed 14 studies (most from the U.S.) looking at the relationship between exercise and school performance. Of those, 10 were based on observation, four used interventions. The number of participants, aged 6 to 18, ranged from 53 to about 12,000. The study was released Monday in the journal Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine . Although some of the studies were inconsistent in discovering a link between being more active and better academic performance, other papers did find evidence.