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Physical activity significantly boosts children's brain development – research

6 November 2020 10:04 AM
Tags:
Depression
Education
Children
Sports
Mental health
Movement
Anxiety
Kids
Childhood development
Early childhood development
physical education
physical activity
childhood anxiety and depression
COVID-19
covid-19 in south africa
Covid-19 in schools
being active
brain development
cognitive development
inactivity
sedentary
physical training
National School Sport Programme
preschool

Lockdown is a scenario we never imagined. So, don’t feel guilty, says researcher Catherine Draper. She offers movement guidelines.

After months of inactivity, some school sports have resumed.

The following activities are now allowed, on the condition that social distancing, handwashing, and mask-wearing (where possible) is adhered to:

  • Non-contact sport training

  • Inter-school non-contact sport matches

  • Non-contact sport-related activities

Schools may decide to not run the risk of resuming sporting activities.

© patcharin123/123rf.com

Africa Melane interviewed Catherine Draper, a senior researcher at the MRC/Wits Developmental Pathways for Health Research Unit.

Draper discussed the impact of the lack of physical training on the development of children.

She says the implementation of physical education in the curriculum (via Life Orientation) is consistently poor.

Few children take part in organised sport; there is limited implementation of the National School Sport Programme.

Covid-19 and the measures to curb its spread has worsened an already dire situation when it comes to getting kids to move.

Children – even older teens – need physical activity for optimal development.

Click here for movement guidelines for children up to five years old.

Physical education is not well implemented in South African schools…

Catherine Draper, senior researcher - MRC/Wits Developmental Pathways for Health Research Unit

Being active is really good for children’s mental health and cognitive development…

Catherine Draper, senior researcher - MRC/Wits Developmental Pathways for Health Research Unit

It’s a scenario we never imagined [lockdown] … Parents shouldn’t feel guilty…

Catherine Draper, senior researcher - MRC/Wits Developmental Pathways for Health Research Unit

It [being active] protects against diabetes and hypertension later in life… Research shows that for children and adolescents, physical activity boosts mental and emotional health. It reduces stress and anxiety…

Catherine Draper, senior researcher - MRC/Wits Developmental Pathways for Health Research Unit

Preschool children shouldn’t get more than an hour of screen time per day… Don’t’ feel guilty; it’s a starting point…

Catherine Draper, senior researcher - MRC/Wits Developmental Pathways for Health Research Unit

Listen to the interview in the audio below


6 November 2020 10:04 AM
Tags:
Depression
Education
Children
Sports
Mental health
Movement
Anxiety
Kids
Childhood development
Early childhood development
physical education
physical activity
childhood anxiety and depression
COVID-19
covid-19 in south africa
Covid-19 in schools
being active
brain development
cognitive development
inactivity
sedentary
physical training
National School Sport Programme
preschool

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