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Sports and Smarts Go Hand In Hand

By Miriam E. Tucker ,

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Kindergarteners who play sports may perform better in the classroom, and vice versa. That’s what researchers found when they analyzed parent and teacher surveys of 2,694 children in  kindergarten and again in fourth grade. Children who were involved in structured physical activity while in kindergarten scored higher in fourth grade on measures such as their ability to follow the teacher’s directions, pay attention, and complete  work on time. On the flip side, the kindergarteners with higher classroom-related scores were also more likely to participate in team sports and other structured activities by the fourth grade. Researchers think that some of the same self-regulation skills might be involved  in both classroom and sporting success. 
Source: American Journal of Health Promotion, published  online July 1, 2015