This is a guest post written by Allison Morris, co-creator of an enlightening graphic that shows how children who exercise are smarter. Allison found this article on Fit2B Studio’s blog, and she wrote directly to me to see if I’d like to carry this educational piece on our site. Of course I said YES! Here’s the graphic, and you can see what she wrote about it below!
Allison writes: With only 12% of students getting the recommended daily amount of exercise, it’s no wonder there’s a national push to keep our kids active. From early childhood through college, kids who exercise score better on intelligence tests, enjoy a higher quality of life, and are generally better students and happier young people.
Video games, television, and computer time alike are doing our kids a disservice, as only one in four children gets at least 30 minutes of exercise per day. With the average elementary aged child watching 28 hours a week watching television, it’s obvious that sedentary activities are hurting our children. Half of all young people ages 12 to 21 don’t participate in any vigorous physical activity, and that takes a toll on both the body and the brain.
40 minutes of daily exercise caused an average IQ increase of 3.8 points
Exercise stimulates brain cell growth, and the younger you start your child’s exercise routine, the better. In a study of elementary school children, 40 minutes of daily exercise caused an average IQ increase of 3.8 points, whereas their inactive counterparts enjoyed less IQ growth. And in a study of sixth graders, the students who were more fit scored 30% higher on tests, while less fit students scored 20% lower. Studies show similar correlations between school performance and fitness as students get older, as well. Staying fit is an important part of adult life, and children need to learn this as early as they can.
An adult employee who exercises is 15% more efficient, which saves companies and workers both time and money. An average employee’s 50 hour week is the same as a fit employee’s 42.5 hour week, and — while this doesn’t affect children today, they will be the workers of tomorrow. Children must learn active habits to easily grow into active, happy adults. Limiting video games, television time, and computer hours, as well as family or group physical activity, is a great first step to a healthier, happier child. Children need to start out active, and stay that way. Your child’s brain is a part of her body, and it must develop along with other muscle groups and systems.
When kids have an exercise routine from a young age, it makes it easier for them to continue this as young adults. And studies show that college students who work out before class improve their test scores an average of 17%. Encourage your child to exercise, for the sake of their brain and body, and check out this graphic provided by OnlineCollegeCourses.com to learn why a fitter body does in-fact lead to a fitter brain.
Bethany responds: Wow! Did you catch that fitter 18 year olds were more likely to go on to higher education? Did you see the pull-quote about higher IQ’s in more active kids? Due to working in corporate wellness, I’ve known this intuitively for a long time, but to see it visualized this way is so powerful! Please share on pinterest and facebook, and comment with your thoughts!