We all know the physical benefits of exercise—control weight, build muscle, reduce fat, and decrease risk factors for a wide variety of reasons.

But did you know how important physical activity is to mental health? Research shows that daily physical activity and movement lead to improvements in mental health, symptoms of depression, anxiety, and self-esteem. In academic settings, physical activity shows positive changes in classroom management, focus, and engagement among most students.

Most importantly, a child that becomes active is most likely to stay engaged in activity throughout their lifetime.

Brain Boosts

Provide quick opportunities for moderate to vigorous activities in the classroom that allows for the brain to break from instruction and be re-energized for further instruction.

Key ingredients for a good Brain Boost:

  1. 3-5 minutes
  2. Vigorous activity
  3. Fun, engaging
  4. Coordinated

Instructional Movement

Strategies that include lower level and moderate physical activity throughout instruction that prevents students from being sedentary too long.

Key Ingredients for Instructional Movement:

  • Deliver instruction while students are moving (walking classrooms, gallery tours)
  • Built into the class routine
  • Mild to Moderate Intensity (but not Sedentary!)
  • Involves standing, sitting and walking