Physical Activity in Children with Disabilities
By: Ellie Moore
Participating in daily physical activity has been shown to have a positive effect on health; however, there are many questions left unanswered about physical activity. Jin, Yun, and Agiovlasitis sought to find the answer to one of those questions: Does a positive relationship between enjoyment of physical activity at school, like recess or physical education, and health among children with disabilities facilitate their overall daily physical activity participation?
An analysis of data from the 2012 National Youth Fitness Survey was used (Jin, Yun, & Agiovlasitis, 2018). Jin, et al., pulled a sample of the data with 241 children with disabilities, ages 5 to 15 (2018). The analysis looked at the number of days per week of physical activity participation for at least 60 minutes a day, general perceived health, and enjoyment in school recess ( ages 5 to 11) or physical education (ages 12 to 15) (Jin, et al., 2018). The results of the data analyzed indicated that the children who enjoyed the school physical activity programs (recess or physical education) also participated in more physical activity and their overall perceived health was better. Jin, et al., stress the importance of creating a school based physical activity program that is not only inclusive but offers choices and creates positive interactions among students and teachers.
The more enjoyable physical activity is, the more likely people of all ages and abilities will participate in it. Let’s get moving!
Jin, J., Yun, J., & Agiovlasitis, S. (2018). Impact of enjoyment on physical activity and health among children with disabilities in schools. Disability and Health Journal, 11(1), 14-19. doi:10.1016/j.dhjo.2017.04.004