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'FUNtervals' improve behaviour of kids

IANS  |  Toronto 

Four minutes of physical activity could improve behaviour in the classroom for primary school students, showed a research.

A brief, high-intensity interval exercise, or a 'FUNterval' for Grade 2 and Grade 4 students reduced off-task behaviour like fidgeting or inattentiveness in the classroom.

FUNtervals involved actively acting out tasks like collecting firewood, starting the fire by crouching and squatting to roast the marshmallows.

"Given the time crunch associated with the current school curriculum, we thought that very brief physical activity breaks might be an interesting way to approach daily physical activity (DPA)," said Brendon Gurd, lead researcher and professor at Queen's the University in Canada.

Under the study, students were taught a class and were then given an active break, where they would perform a FUNterval.

When a four-minute FUNterval was completed, there was less off-task behaviour observed in the 50 minutes following the break from class than if students completed a non-active break, found the research.

The research appeared in the journal Applied Physiology, Nutrition and Metabolism.

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First Published: Sun, November 02 2014. 15:16 IST