In a recent report, the Department of Health stated: “Physical education is not limited to training in physical skills, and has more than just a recreational dimension. With involvement in many physical activities comes knowledge and insight centred on principles and concepts such as ‘rules of the game’, fair play and respect, bodily awareness, and the social awareness linked to personal interaction and team effort in many sports.” Prime Minister David Cameron clearly supports this view, having announced a £150 million a year boost to primary school sport in March this year.
There are several studies that examine the benefits of regular intense activity. Research has shown a positive correlation between good behaviour and exercise and being active from childhood leads to better performance in mental tests at the age of 50. What’s more, did you know that children can half their risk of becoming obese by taking part in 15 minutes of activity every day?!
Next week marks ‘Bike to School Week’, encouraging children (and hopefully many teachers too) to travel to school on their bikes. Cycling is the third most popular recreational activity in the UK and according to the NHS online, an estimated 3.1 million people in the UK ride a bicycle each month.
Cycling has many benefits; for a start, it can easily be incorporated into a daily routine because it’s also a mode of transportation. This is in turn helps the environment and decreases the amount of traffic on busy school roads.
For those of you who are perhaps a little exercise shy, cycling is great because it’s a low-impact type of activity, (unless you have to cycle up a steep hill for 20 minutes to get to the school gates!) so it’s easier on your joints, but still gets you into shape.
So with summer finally setting in, what better way to make the most of the sunshine than cycling to school? Who knows, it might inspire the next Bradley Wiggins!