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The importance of Physical Activity

The values of Physical Activity and Physical Education


Physical Activities have important health values. They are essential for the growing child and stimulate growth.


Physical Education (PE) lessons are valuable because they contribute a child’s cardiovascular health and helps promote the development of strong muscles and bones. Exercising regularly also combats obesity in children, which can reduce the risk of developing heart disease, diabetes and other common illnesses. PE not only helps keep children strong, but it can also increase their concentration and focus, improve their classroom behaviour and attitude to learning. It can boost their overall academic performance. Through PE, children come to understand the value of being physically active, which increases their likelihood of developing healthy habits which will continue into adulthood.


PE also fosters healthy social interactions allowing children to engage in activities that encourage them to support one another and to work effectively in teams. As children develop these positive character traits and boost their confidence, they are more likely to want to try out for a school team sport or to engage in community activities that require a certain degree of fitness, such as football, martial arts, swimming etc.


In the Foundation Stage and Key Stage 1 children are given the opportunity to develop fundamental movement skills, become increasingly competent and confident and extend the physical qualities such as agility, balance and coordination, individually as well as with others. Opportunities are provided for participation in competitive (both against self and against others) and co-operative physical activities in progressively challenging situations. Children are taught to:


  • master basic movements including running, jumping, throwing and catching, as well as developing balance, agility and co-ordination, and begin to apply these in a range of activities.
  • participate in team games, developing simple tactics for attacking and defending.
  • perform dances using simple movement patterns.


In Key Stage 2 children continue to be given opportunities to apply and also develop a broader range of skills and link them to make sequences of movement and actions. Also at this stage they participate in activities which give opportunities to develop skills of communicating, collaborating and competing with each other. They are encouraged to self-evaluate e.g. think of ideas of how to improve their performance in physical activities and sports and recognise their own success.


Pupils are taught to:


  • use basic movements including running, jumping, throwing and catching in isolation and in combination, as well as develop the physical abilities, such as, flexibility, strength, technique, control and balance
  • play competitive games, modified where appropriate, and apply basic principles suitable for attacking and defending
  • perform dances using a range of movement patterns
  • take part in outdoor and adventurous activity challenges both individually and within a team
  • compare their performances with previous ones and demonstrate improvement to achieve their personal best


Swimming and water safety


We provide swimming lessons in key stage 2 


During swimming lessons children are taught to:


  • swim competently, confidently and proficiently (with the aim to swim over a distance of at least 25 metres)
  • use a range of strokes effectively (for example, front crawl, backstroke and breaststroke)
  • perform safe self-rescue in different water-based situations