Ten Minutes of Interdisciplinary Physical Activity Improve Academic Performance

Tania Pinto-Escalona

Óscar Martínez-de-Quel

*Corresponding author: Tania Pinto-Escalona taniapin@ucm.es

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Pinto-Escalona, T., & Martínez-de-Quel, Ó. (2019). Ten Minutes of Interdisciplinary Physical Activity Improve Academic Performance. Apunts. Educación Física y Deportes, 138, 82-94. 




The increase in sedentary lifestyles has led to a number of strategies to promote physical activity. Doing physical exercise in the classroom could be a strategy to improve academic performance and break away from sedentary periods in schools. Thus, the objective of our pilot study was to learn about the effects of an interdisciplinary intervention between Physical Education and a classroom subject. 116 secondary education students (50 girls aged 13.5 ± .7 years and 66 boys aged 13.4 ± .7 years) took part. At the beginning of the Spanish Language and Literature teaching unit, the control group carried out 10 minutes of study and review seated in their chairs while the experimental group did 10 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical exercise related to the contents of the same teaching unit. Before and after the intervention, the participants completed a multiple-choice test about the teaching unit, The Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ), and the Questionnaire for Assessing Physical Activity in Teenage Schoolchildren. Doing ten minutes of physical activity related to the contents of a curricular area has been shown to improve academic performance (p < .05), attention (p < .01) and increase the weekly frequency of physical activity (p < .01). This type of intervention could improve academic performance and increase engagement in physical activity in schools.

Keywords: Academic Performance, Interdisciplinarity, Physical Education, Secondary Education, Sedentary Lifestyle.

ISSN: 1577-4015

Received: February 16, 2017

Accepted: October 4, 2018

Published: October 01, 2019