Essay on Effects of Limited Physical Exercises

3 pages
659 words
George Washington University
Type of paper: 
Literature review
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Physical activity is a fundamental feature of childhood development for many reasons. It is an important aspect in the healthy development of kids. In this article, we seek to discover whether the levels of physical activity during the formative stages of a child ultimately affects his/her concentration on the later stages of life. Before responding to this argument, it is critical to know that physical activities have a huge influence on the cognitive and physical development of young children. This means that physical activities affect childrens emotional maturity, social competence, psychological well-being and motor skills. Active play and physical movement during early childhood development allow children to develop skills, attitudes, and behaviors for lifelong physical health.

Physical activity is one of the most efficient ways of increasing well-being of children. In fact, a lot of cognitive, social and physical changes take place during the childhood development (Cheung, 2010). Active lifestyles in children during the formative stages enables them to develop strong bones and muscles, and most improve their social skills and self-confidence. Parents are often advised to ensure that their children are physically active for approximately 180 minutes. Some of the physical activities children can engage in include: rolling and playing, moving around, standing up as well as doing more energy intensive activities such as hopping, running, jumping, and skipping. It is believed that these kinds of physical activities promote healthy emotional, social and physical growth throughout childhood (Ramli, 2017). This means that physically active kids are more likely to develop healthy levels of activities in future. Studies show that physical activities in early childhood affect the concentration levels of children later in life. Scholar argues that depending on the type of exercises, children can learn how to multitask, ignore distractions and most significantly manipulate information in their minds. This theory experimented with some children who were told to bounce two balls at the same time. It was noted that during the game, every child was attentive to the sport and despite the external distractions, they continued to participate in the game. Moreover, in another experiment involving aerobics-style activities where school children were subjected to the process after every 20 minutes. It was observed that children developed improved attention after the exercises. Researchers also observed that the physically active children had higher concentration levels compared to the less active kids.

Regular physical exercises stimulate the brain to release brain chemicals key for concentration, mental sharpness, and memory (Eastman, 1997). The chemical released is called brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). Scientists explain that when children move around and exercise, a lot of brain cells are used in the process. The use of more brain cells initiates the release of BDNF which in turn reconnects the memory circuits and allows the childrens minds to work better. The impact of this chemical is long-term, that is why there are high chances of seeing those children who were physically active during their formative stages develop high concentration levels at the later stages of life. BDNF is only produced during physical activity, therefore physically active kids tend to produce more BDNF which translates to higher concentration levels. To determine the influence of physical activities on concentration levels in two classes were examined. All pupils were taught the same subject matter. However, the first class was engaged in physical education activities while the second was not. Teachers establish that the pupils from the first class exhibited increased concentration compared to the second class. They concluded that physical exercises have significant impacts on the concentration of the children.


Cheung, R. H. (2010). Designing movement activities to develop childrens creativity in early childhood education. Early Child Development and Care, 180(3), 377-385. doi:10.1080/03004430801931196

Eastman, W. (1997). Active living: Physical activities for infants, toddlers, and preschoolers. Early Childhood Education Journal, 24(3), 161-164. doi:10.1007/bf02353273

Ramli, M., Sujana, Y., Kurniawati, D. Y., & Matsuri, M. (2017). Adopting Physical Activities and Physical Skills of Japanese Early Childhood Model. Proceedings of the 3rd International Conference on Early Childhood Education (ICECE 2016). doi:10.2991/icece-16.2017.57

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