Physical Activity

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CYPOP 4: Promote young children’s physical activity and movement skills

1.1 Explain why physical activity is important to the short and long term health and well being of children

Physical activity is important to the short term and long term health and well being of children. In the short term physical activity helps children to build muscle, develops the skeletal frame, develops the heart and lung function and helps prevent obesity. If children have enough physical activity a day which is said to be up to an hour it can help children get to sleep easier and sleep for longer periods of time. This can lead onto long term benefits as if the activity is outside it will also help to build up a good immune system so they are less likely to fall ill to the common cold or the flu.

The outdoor environment helps the overall well being of the children as the outdoors makes them feel free which helps their emotional and social development, as it allow them to learn new skills and develop confidence in playing alongside others. In the long term physical activity helps the children to become interested in sports and outdoor activities. This is a good foundation to build when the children are young because as they grow older children and young adults start to become less active so early physical activity is more beneficial for the child in the long term. If when children are young and do not take part in physical activity it is more likely that they will become obese later on in life which in turn could end up with them getting more serious diseases such as type 2 diabetes, cancer or heart diseases, it could also result in girls having osteoporosis later on in life.

Physical activity does not mean expense. This could be that you go for walks in the local area and make it fun by having skipping/hopping/running races between lampposts etc and taking a ball so you can call at the local park for a kick around. This could also incorporate a nature trip to collect and see things, so children may not realise how far they are going. Indoor activities could include wii fit hour, which I incorporate as every child can have a go. There is also ‘keepy uppy’, which is a balloon that you pass around so it doesn’t touch the floor or musical statues for movement and balance.

1.2 Explain the development of movement skills in young children and how these skills affect other aspects of development.

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CYPOP 4

1.2

In order to achieve the physical skills required for the areas in the spider diagram, a mixture of movement skills need to be acquired in the right order. They include the following:

Hand-Eye Coordination. Many activities require hands and eyes to work together. To catch a ball, for example, the brain needs to take information from the eyes and use it to inform the movements that have to be made with the hands.

Foot – Eye coordination. Children have to learn to guide their feet. Climbing stairs and kicking a ball require this type of coordination.

Balance. Balance is a complicated skill. Although it is one that most people take for granted. The ability to balance develops with age, with most children relying on visual input to balance.

The development of these skills follows the development of the central nervous system (principally the brain and spinal cord) in babies and young children. The central nervous system is responsible for collecting, interpreting and sending out information to all parts of the body. Information is constantly collected via the body’s senses of taste, touch, smell, sight and hearing. This information is then transformed into electrical pulses that are carried by the nerves, up through the spinal cord and into the brain. From the information received, the brain then responds and sends out instructions to muscles, glands and organs using the network of nerves again. The whole process is surprisingly quick, which means the body can...
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