Walking buses are often promoted based on the fact that if more children were involved, their weights, fitness and perhaps even learning would improve.
Wouldn't it be great? After all, it is a relatively inexpensive intervention and one seems that everyone can, at least in theory, get behind.
But does it work?
This is definitely a good story, nor is it frankly amazing, but here it is – a recent MOVI-KIDS study aimed to investigate whether or not there is a relationship between active transport in 4-7 year olds and the weights, fitness and knowledge.
The study involved 1,159 children in Spain and were categorized according to whether the active ingredients of their school took a total of more than 15 minutes and then tested and measured to explore the potential impact of the school. Heights and weights were measured, a validated cardiopulmonary fitness test was administered, as well as multiple batteries of validated cognitive tests. Efforts were also made to control the family's socio-economic status, and of course the age and gender of the children.
As you may have gathered, walkers were found to be no better at any studied variable with the authors coming to a clear conclusion,
"Walking to school did not have a positive impact on fainting, fitness and cognition in children aged 4 to 7 years."
Very much. Truly.
I must also say, I scratch my head reading the next part of their conclusion though,
"It would be interesting for future studies to examine the intensity and duration of the active transition to school necessary to deliver substantial health and cognitive benefits."
I cannot say that I agree with them here, as I am not sure that the long, intense day-to-day schooling for 4-year-olds is something to look at, regardless of their impact on anything. Besides, I don't need to see "significant benefits" wanting to continue to promote the movement and play with our children, and if we buy the same need, we will risk halting programs that do not prove to have wider results or more dramatic results than might have been expected. from them.