Job search
Job Search
Latest news
More news: (showing 1 - 20 of 13157)           
UK only International

Summer holidays driving fitness inequalities among children, ukactive research says

By Deven Pamben    12 Jul 2017
ukactive research director Dr Steven Mann was the lead author of the study

School summer holidays are creating a class divide between the fitness levels of deprived children and their more affluent peers thanks to a lack of affordable physical activity offerings, research from ukactive has revealed.

Study findings – which were presented at the annual Congress of the European College of Sport Science in Germany last week – show how the poorest 25 per cent of primary schoolchildren experience a drop in their fitness levels 18 times greater than the richest 25 per cent over the school summer holiday.

The authors believe the prohibitive cost of school holiday activities, such as summer camps, means many of the poorest children are left inactive, putting them at much higher risk of diseases such as heart disease, cancer and type-II diabetes in later life.

These findings form the second part of a study from ukactive and children’s activity provider Premier Sport into physical activity among eight and nine-year-olds.

The research tracked the cardiorespiratory fitness (CRF) levels of more than 400 children in 13 schools across the North West of England over a 13-month period. It is the first study of its kind to measure fitness levels both before and after the summer holidays.

Fitness levels of the most deprived children fell significantly during the summer holidays compared to their more affluent peers, meaning they were able to run far shorter distances before exhaustion in September than they could in June, while the fitness levels of the most affluent group dipped slightly but were relatively unaffected.

Last year, the first part of the research showed how fitness levels steadily improve throughout the school year but these gains were all but wiped out due to ‘lazy summer holidays’.

The latest findings, which are in peer review, have prompted the researchers to call for an overhaul of activity funding.

They say the UK government’s promised £415m (US$533.2m, €466.3m) of Sugar Tax funding for school sport should be used to support out-of-term exercise sessions and in-school fitness measurement to ensure children maintain active lifestyles during the summer break.

"There's a growing class divide around fitness levels due to the summer holidays and the government must urgently address these Victorian-style health inequalities to give every child a fair chance of a healthy start in life," said Dr Steven Mann, ukactive research director and lead author of the study.

“Our research with Premier Sport suggests deprived children are being plonked in front of screens for hours on end, while their more affluent peers are able to maintain their fitness levels through summer camps and other activities.”

David Batch, Premier Sport chief executive, said: “Whilst the money from the sugar tax levy is welcomed, we need to ensure the money is used by those in most need of intervention and that its impact can be measured. To do this effectively we first need to understand where individuals are now. Then we can implement appropriate interventions, to not only maximise the benefits to participants but also ensure any investment is being well spent and has the maximum impact.”

ukactive Kids – the dedicated children’s arm of the not-for-profit organisation – is working to embed greater levels of activity throughout the school day and at home through the launch of its 10 at 10 project.

The scheme, to begin on National Fitness Day (27 September), will see 10,000 schools take part in 10-minute bursts of activity at 10am, with the aim that these sessions become part of the school day and can be replicated at home during school holidays.

ukactive  Children 
Sign up for FREE ezines & magazines
Related news
Sports jobs
Everyone Active
featured job

Swimming Teachers

Everyone Active
Salary: Competitive hourly rate
Job location: Nationwide

Personal / Fitness Trainer - Eastbourne

The Gym Group
Salary: Fantastic Benefits
Location: East Sussex, England

Recreation Assistant

Parkwood Leisure
Salary: Competitive salary
Location: Hengrove, Bristol, UK

Trainee Duty Manager

Parkwood Leisure
Salary: Competitive salary
Location: Hengrove, Bristol, UK

Duty Manager

Legacy Leisure
Salary: Competitive salary
Location: Maidenhead, UK

Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £8.21 per hour
Location: Wadebridge, Cornwall, UK

Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £8.21 per hour
Location: Appleby-in-Westmorland, Cumbria, UK

Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £22,008 per annum
Location: Mitcham, UK

Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £10.55 per hour
Location: Horley, Surrey, UK

Leisure Team Member Apprentice

GLL
Salary: Up to £22,008 per annum
Location: Barnet, UK
recruiting with sports management

Senior Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £23,894 per annum
Location: Chelsea, London, UK

Duty Manager

Legacy Leisure
Salary: Competitive salary
Location: Newbury, UK

Duty Manager

Legacy Leisure
Salary: Competitive salary
Location: Kidlington, UK

Team Leader / Duty Manager

Everyone Active
Salary: Competitive salary
Location: Stratford-upon-Avon, UK

Gymnastics Coach

Everyone Active
Salary: Competitive
Location: Chichester, United Kingdom

Gymnastics Coach

Everyone Active
Salary: Competitive
Location: Cotswold, United Kingdom

Gymnastics Coach

Everyone Active
Salary: Competitive
Location: Ealing, United Kingdom
recruiting with sports management

Gymnastics Coach

Everyone Active
Salary: Competitive
Location: Sutton, United Kingdom

Gymnastics Coach

Everyone Active
Salary: Competitive
Location: Ashfield, United Kingdom

Gymnastics Coach

Everyone Active
Salary: Competitive
Location: Ealing, United Kingdom

Gymnastics Coach

Everyone Active
Salary: Competitive
Location: Poole, United Kingdom

Gymnastics Coach

Everyone Active
Salary: Competitive
Location: Stowmarket, United Kingdom

Gymnastics Coach

Everyone Active
Salary: Competitive
Location: Stroud, United Kingdom

Swimming Teacher

Everyone Active
Salary: Competitive Rate of Pay
Location: Horfield, Bristol, UK
training with sports management

Assistant Gym Manager

PureGym
Salary: Competitive Salary + Excellent Benefits + Incentives
Location: Tunbridge Wells, UK

Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £18,305 per annum
Location: Thame, Oxfordshire, UK

Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £16,696 per annum
Location: Cockermouth, Cumbria, UK

Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £9.00 per hour
Location: Hatfield, Hertfordshire

Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £9.00 per hour
Location: Thame, Oxfordshire, UK

Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £16,696 per annum
Location: Appleby-in-Westmorland, Cumbria, UK

Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £16,696 per annum
Location: Penrith, Cumbria, UK
lifeguard jobs  swimming teacher jobs  recreation assistant jobs  apprenticeships jobs  personal trainer jobs  Gymnastics Coach jobs  duty manager jobs  assistant manager jobs  general manager jobs  assistant general manager jobs  Catering Assistant jobs  Customer Services Advisor jobs 
More jobs

Video Gallery

Wattbike
The choice of the elite. Wattbike introduced the first true indoor bike in 2008, changing indoor cycling forever. Developed in association with world class coaches and athletes, and now chosen by the world’s premier health clubs, cycling studios, and personal trainers as well as universities, the military, and countless athletes and coaches across the world, Wattbike has truly revolutionised indoor cycling. Want to join our revolution? Power up your business with Wattbike.
Visit website
More videos

Company profile

Company profile: Physical Company Ltd
Physical Company provides specialist fitness solutions. This includes equipment, flooring, gym design, programming and training to individuals and organisations across the UK and Europe.
View full profile >
More company profiles

Featured Supplier

FORA works with Power Plate to raise awareness of sitting disease through movement and vibration
With office workers spending over eight hours per day sitting at their desks, and one in six affected by mental health issues every year, it is no surprise that businesses are looking to introduce ‘wellness’ to the workplace
View full details >
More featured suppliers

Diary dates

06-07 Mar 2020
Palazzo del Ghiaccio, Milan, Italy
23-25 Mar 2020
Hilton, Barcelona, Spain
25 Mar 2020
Executive Boardroom, Middlesex University, London, United Kingdom
25-26 Mar 2020
Eastwood Hall, Nottingham, United Kingdom
More diary dates