Active children dramatically more coordinated than sedentary children

It comes as no shock that sedentary lifestyles inhibit children’s motor skills, but parents may be surprised to learn by just how much.

A recent study from the American Journal of Human Biology found that children who spend three-quarters of their time sitting have motor coordination skills nine times poorer than those of active children.

Lead author Dr. Luis Lopes says it is essential that humans develop motor coordination during childhood and that a sedentary lifestyle can lead to a number of problems in a young person’s life:

Childhood is a critical time for the development of motor coordination skills which are essential for health and well-being,” said lead author Dr Luis Lopes, from the University of Minho. “We know that sedentary lifestyles have a negative effect on these skills and are associated with decreased fitness, lower self-esteem, decreased academic achievement and increased obesity.”

When parents consider the amount of time their kids spend sitting at school and in the car, adding TV, computer and video game time into the mix is likely indicative of a sedentary lifestyle.

The study found that the average child in the sample spends 75.6 per cent of his or her time sitting and that the effects of a sedentary lifestyle are even more harmful to boys. You can read the full article on Science Daily.

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