Influence of Classroom-Based Physical Activity Breaks on Physical Activity and On-Task Behavior in Preschool Children
S. Wood Logan, Ph.D.; Danielle D. Wadsworth, Ph.D.; Leah E. Robinson, Ph.D.; E. Kipling Webster, Ph.D.

Purpose. The purpose of this study was to determine the influence of implementing physical activity breaks on moderate-to-vigorous physical activity and on-task behavior in preschool children. Method. Children enrolled in a public, federal-subsidized childcare center (n = 9) and a private, university-based childcare center (n = 12) participated in this within-subjects study. Data were collected on two days of typical instruction and two days that included the implementation of a 10-minute physical activity break. Moderate-to-vigorous physical activity was measured with accelerometers. Children’s on-task behavior was observed and recorded as on-task or off-task (motor, noise or passive/other). Results. Paired-samples t-tests indicated that preschoolers in each sample accumulated significantly more total morning (p < .01) and indoor (p < .01) physical activity on days that provided a physical activity break. On-task behavior increased, although not significantly, after the physical activity break. Conclusion. Initial evidence suggests that the implementation of physical activity breaks in preschool settings increases physical activity participation.

Full Text: PDF     DOI: 10.15640/jehd.v4n4a6