Growing up active: a study into physical activity in long day care centers



Publication Details

Cashmore, A. W. & Jones, S. C. (2008). Growing up active: a study into physical activity in long day care centers. Journal of Research in Childhood Education: an international journal of research on the education of children, 23 (2), 179-191.


The child care center is an ideal setting in which to implement strategies to promote physical activity and healthy weight, but there is a paucity of empirical evidence on factors that influence physical activity in these settings. The current study gathered initial qualitative data to explore these factors. Child care workers from five long day care centers in inner Sydney participated in focus group interviews. The participants identified a range of factors that influence physical activity participation in long day care centers, including barriers to the provision of physical activity opportunities. We provide specific recommendations for health promotion strategies to increase physical activity in child care centers, such as: support the implementation of dance and creative movement programs; explore settings other than, or in addition to, formal child care to implement programs to promote mastery of fundamental movement skills; and develop a set of physical activity guidelines for Australian children ages one month to five years. Recommendations for future research are also provided.

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