I started running when I was a parent of three young kids to get some time by myself. I still run because it’s such a good rush and is a great way to start my day — I do a lot of my best thinking during those early morning hours. When I’m done, I feel focused and ready to face the world.
Today, science backs the evidence that running, and exercise in general, boosts not only emotional health, but blood flow to the brain, making it easier to stay on task and learn better. This is especially true for school children, who spend much of their time in classrooms and are expected to pay attention and do their work.
Without an outlet to positively direct energy and boost blood flow to support brain function, concentration suffers, which can be disastrous for so many kids.
My Elementary and Jr. High Years
I know what it’s like to be the student who can’t sit still, has a hard time focusing and listening to the teacher. That was me as a child. I was always being called out for disrupting the classroom. It wasn’t until I was an adult that I understood the positive relationship between movement and learning.
I look back at those years and the lingering effects with empathy for that little girl, but I know she wasn’t — and isn’t — alone.