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Do Short Physical Activity Breaks in Classrooms Work?

ALR_Brief_ActivityBreaks_Feb2013coverCreating activity breaks at school, such as moving and stepping for up to 20 minutes at a time in the classroom during the school day, is a relatively new and innovative method for increasing physical activity among children. Several activity break programs already are available for teachers to use with children at different ages, and many of them have been evaluated.

In South Carolina, the Healthy Students Act of 2013 (Senate Bill 599) has been introduced by Senator Katrina Shealy (R, Lexington). The legislation focuses on schools’ efforts to provide a healthier environment for children. It extends certain provisions of the 2005 Students Health and Fitness Act (SHFA) to middle and high schools.

Active Living Reserach, a national program of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, released brief that summarizes the research on how programs that provide classroom physical activity breaks impact physical activity, on-task behavior, health, and related factors in children. This brief focuses on activity breaks conducted in the classroom, and does not cover physical education classes, recess, or physical activity breaks outside of schools.

Download the Do Short Physical Activity Breaks in Classrooms Work? brief.

Learn more about how schools can help children and teens be active.