Dutch study links school marks to exercise

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Dutch scientists have found strong evidence to link children’s physical activity to how well they do at school, reports the BBC. Researchers from VU University Medical Center in Amsterdam reviewed 14 previous studies, mostly from the United States, involving more than 12,000 children.

Dr Amika Singh and her colleagues said that while the evidence was strong, more studies examining the exact relationship between physical activity and academic performance were needed.

The Dutch study, published in Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, was prompted by concern that pressure to improve school marks could mean children spend more time behind their desk and less time doing physical activity.

The researchers believe that exercise may help improve cognitive performance by increasing blood and oxygen flow to the brain. It may also benefit classroom behaviour by reducing stress and improving mood.

Calling for more research, Dr Singh said: "People always ask, 'How much exercise do I need to do to get an A?' We don't know that but we would like to find out."

© Radio Netherlands Worldwide

© Radio Netherlands Worldwide

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