Australian researchers screening kids to see if they have basic movement skills

Australia’s Caboolture magazine reports on findings that add further weight to the importance of educating our kids in physical literacy.

A recent study conducted by the University of the Sunshine Coast, in Queensland, Australia, found a direct connection between a child’s basic movement skills and their activity level.

Over 1,000 kids from Grades 1 to 8 were screened on their physical literacy by performing seven core movement competencies – squat, lunge, push, pull, hinge, brace, and rotate. The research showed that children who performed these movements well tended to be more active generally, whether through games or lunchtime play or more focused sport and fitness activities.

The flip side of this finding is that if a child doesn’t move well or feel physically capable, they won’t choose to put themselves into active situations and this pattern of avoidance will follow them into adulthood.

USC’s, Dr. Mark McKean points out how many modern health problems, such as obesity, could be treated by increased movement. According to Dr. McKean, physical literacy was once the norm for children, but growing technology, safety issues, and environmental restrictions prevent kids from taking a movement-based approach to daily activity and play.

Researchers hope data from the study will be used to change how PE is taught in schools.

Interested in finding out whether or not your child’s PE experience is benefiting them?

And here are 7 activities you can do with your kids based on the basic movements in the study:

See how physically literate your child is using our physical literacy checklists.

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