Bigger play areas for kids cut obesity risk

October 9, 2012
Bigger play areas for kids cut obesity risk

The global fight against obesity could be helped by providing support for child's play, a researcher from The University of Western Australia has found.

Research leader Dr Karen Martin studied school environments and their association with physical activity during school recess.

The study found children who attended schools with more unobstructed grassed play area per child were more active in recess times. The advantage of exercise during childhood means a reduced risk of obesity as an adult.

"The benefits of childhood physical activity transcend childhood and adolescence, and include a reduced risk of or obese," Dr Martin said.

The study found children were more likely to get out and play if there were plenty of open, grassed areas available to them.

Dr Martin said her study supported earlier research which found the availability of open fields was associated with higher physical activity.

She said expansive and unobstructed grassed surfaces were ideal for children's sports and games.

"The results indicate that the amount of grassed play area available is an important variable to consider during school planning.

It was also noted in the study that schools could boost in children if they engaged an active coordinator. Not only were children encouraged to exercise more but they had a healthy as well.

Explore further: Experts: Gym gone but not forgotten? Parents want more physical activity at school for kids

Related Stories

Experts: Gym gone but not forgotten? Parents want more physical activity at school for kids

April 18, 2011
Childhood obesity affects 1 of every 6 kids in the United States, in part due to a lack of physical activity. Schools can play a key part in offering elementary-age kids lots of chances to be active—on the playground ...

Environmental factors predict underserved children's physical activity

July 14, 2011
In 2005, Jeffrey Martin, Ph.D., professor of kinesiology, health and sport studies in Wayne State University's College of Education, found that children living in underserved communities are less physically active than their ...

School climate can affect overweight children for life

April 24, 2012
Kids can be really mean – especially to other kids – and school-yard bullying can have serious immediate and long-term effects. One area of increasing concern in this regard is the possibility that overweight or ...

Recommended for you

Policy and early intervention can curb obesity rates

December 18, 2017
More information and emphasis on dietary lifestyle changes that prevent obesity, and its comorbidities, have not reduced the rise in obesity in U.S. adults and adolescents, according to a recent study in the New England Journal ...

Warning labels can help reduce soda consumption and obesity, new study suggests

December 15, 2017
Labels that warn people about the risks of drinking soda and other sugar-sweetened beverages can lower obesity and overweight prevalence, suggests a new Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health study.

Parents modeling healthy behaviors leads to markedly better outcomes for children

December 13, 2017
When trying to help children lose weight, involving a parent in the treatment makes the entire family healthier, researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis have shown.

'Obesity paradox' not found when measuring new cases of cardiovascular disease

December 7, 2017
Although obesity is a well-known risk factor for getting cardiovascular disease, a controversial body of research suggests that obesity may actually be associated with improved survival among people who have cardiovascular ...

Harmful effects of being overweight underestimated

December 1, 2017
The harmful effects of being overweight have been underestimated, according to a new study that analysed body mass index (BMI), health and mortality data in around 60,000 parents and their children, to establish how obesity ...

More than half of US children will have obesity as adults if current trends continue

November 29, 2017
If current trends in child obesity continue, more than 57% of today's children in the U.S. will have obesity at age 35, according to a new study from Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.