Dr. Erianne Weight
A new study at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC) analyzed the impact of the Walking Classroom, a program that intertwines exercise into the school day, on elementary student’s health.
Currently, the program is used in all 50 states. It aims to combat childhood obesity and helps students with ADHD, dyslexia or autism.
The study was led by Dr. Erianne Weight, associate professor of sport administration at UNC, and analyzed changes among student’s health literacy and levels of physical activity after being involved in the program for a year.
According to the study, there was a 10.7% increase in health literacy after a year of participating in the program. Each week, students walked 84.5 more minutes, participated in 66.8 more minutes of vigorous activity and 35.3 more minutes of moderate activity.
“Kids love the fact that they’re getting out of the classroom,” says CEO and program creator Laura Fenn. “What they don’t often realize is how much they’re learning and how much that fresh air and exercise is improving their health.”