Today’s poll: Fitness – should schools focus less on sport and more on getting children walking every day?

A new report warns that schoolchildren in England are the least fit they have ever been and suggests lack of government support for activities like swimming might be to blame…

But is the emphasis on sport the wrong one here? Indeed, is not sport and the associations if has for many – getting changed, requiring skills, equipment, competing etc – exactly the kind of thing that will drive many away (especially, perhaps, those most in need of improving their fitness)?

Instead, should more schools follow the example of the school in Scotland that has a daily mile for all come rain or shine? There is no equipment required, no skills needed, no getting change or anything like that. They just go outside for 15 minutes every day and move. 

What do you think?


Fitness - should schools focus less on sport and more on getting children walking every day?


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  1. OPAL Outdoor Play and Learning CIC has had great success in showing schools how they can improve fitness and physical literacy in all children, not just the naturally sporty kids. 
    We work with Fitmedia, who use the exact same database as Uni Essex and count Gavin Sandercock as an expert adviser, to provide schools with the tools to 1) promote health and wellbeing, and 2) be able to prove it to parents and others.
    We do it by using the exact same tests used in the article, and then compare the results against the database.

    There is no excuse for any school – all pupils can easily improve their health, fitness and wellbeing, provided they go about it the right way. 
    Sport/PE lessons and expensive play equipment are not that way.

  2. Nairb

    Interesting that the report above notes that ‘schoolchildren’ are less fit than previously. Not ‘children’ but ‘schoolchildren.’ It’s clear where the blame lies then, it’s schools again. Nothing to do with home, with diet, with not playing outside, with spending hours watching TV or on digital devices. Schools fail yet again!

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