Get moving and think better: impact of an intervention involving physical activity and active breaks on children's cognition

Fernanda Castillo, Camila Felin Fochesatto, Joao Francisco de Castro Silveira, Tomás Reyes Amigo, Caroline Brand, Ricardo Martínez

Submited: 2024-05-30 12:13:29 | Published: 2024-07-05 08:24:14

DOI: https://doi.org/10.5027/jmh-Vol21-Issue2(2024)art225

Aim: To verify the effect of an intervention with active breaks and physical education (PE) classes on children's cognitive development in a high-vulnerability school setting while also determining their sedentary behavior and physical activity levels. Methods: This quasi-experimental study included 42 children aged 9–13 years from a public school located in Quintero, Valparaiso, Chile. Participants were divided into an Intervention Group (IG), engaging in PE classes and active breaks during 8 weeks, and a Comparison Group (CG), participating in physical education classes alone. Response inhibition was measured through the Go/No-Go test and working memory through the N-Back test. Physical activity and sedentary behavior were assessed using accelerometers. ANCOVA and propensity score matching (average treatment effect on the treated = ATET) were used for statistical analysis. Results: After the intervention, the IG showed an improvement in the reaction time of working memory (ΔMean=-179.30; p=0.044; d=0.89; large effect size). Also, the ATET was -153.90 seconds (95%CI: -272.01; -47.79; p=0.005) for reaction time, confirming a significant increase in the intervention. Conclusion: This study provides evidence that an active break program can enhance working memory in children, suggesting that integrating these breaks along with PE classes in the school setting should be considered to promote cognition.


Castillo F, Felin Fochesatto C, de Castro Silveira J, Reyes Amigo T, Brand C, Martínez R. Get moving and think better: impact of an intervention involving physical activity and active breaks on children's cognition. Journ. M. Health. 2024;21(2). Disponible en: doi:10.5027/jmh-Vol21-Issue2(2024)art225 [Accessed 24 jul. 2024].
Castillo, F., Felin Fochesatto, C., de Castro Silveira, J., Reyes Amigo, T., Brand, C., & Martínez, R. (2024). Get moving and think better: impact of an intervention involving physical activity and active breaks on children's cognition. Journal of Movement & Health, 21(2). doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.5027/jmh-Vol21-Issue2(2024)art225

Enlaces refback

  • No hay ningún enlace refback.


Copyright (c) 2024 Journal of Movement & Health

Licencia de Creative Commons
Este obra está bajo una licencia de Creative Commons Reconocimiento-CompartirIgual 4.0 Internacional.