Effects of a School Physical Activity Intervention in Pre-adolescents
The objective of this study is to examine the possible effects of a daily physical activity intervention on physical fitness, coordination and attention. The program lasts 12 weeks and its participants were 89 sixt+h grade elementary school students from two bilingual state schools in the Autonomous Community of Madrid; 45 of these students were in the intervention group and 44 were selected as control students. Cardiorespiratory capacity was assessed using the 1 km test, lower-limb muscle strength was checked with the standing long jump test, and coordination was determined by lateral jumping. Attention capacity was examined with the Perception of Differences Test. After the paired t-test, significant differences between pre- and post-groups were obtained in cardiorespiratory capacity (min), coordination (number of jumps), height (m), and attention levels (number of rights choices and efficacy). In conclusion, primary school interventions, like the one performed in this study, may offer a positive influence to improve all of the aforementioned aspects. According to these research results and to other researchers in this line of investigation, it is suggested that physical activity be included in the planning of academic subjects as well as physical activity breaks throughout the day that support Physical Education lessons.