The socialization process in grade school is interesting, to say the least. Too often, kids get labeled, stigmatized and categorized according to their primary area of performance. Good athletes become “jocks.” Good students become “brainiacs.” But we need to teach children that they can be both; in fact, it’s high time to hail the student-athlete! Here’s why.
According to a recent study of 9-11-year-olds, muscle fitness, determined by 30-second repetitions of a battery of upper-body, lower-body and core exercises (lunges, push-ups, shoulder presses, etc.) using either body weight or a medicine ball, correlated with performance on memory, math, reading and writing tests. Kids who performed better (more repetitions) on the muscular fitness tests also did better on the memory and academic tests than their less-fit peers, according to the study.
Parents all want their children to succeed in all areas of life, but too often, they make a choice between academics and athletics. Here’s a great reason to prioritize both! Talk to your doctor to learn more about the importance of muscular fitness and how to get your kids started on the path to fitness. To learn about safe exercise strategies for adolescents and teens, read Dr. Perry Nickelston’s article from the May 2009 issue of To Your Health.
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