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The Connection Between Movement and Focus in Children

Jan 28, 2014 09:02AM ● Published by Anonymous

Parents of children with ADHD often note excessive hyperactivity in their children, such as continuous fidgeting and squirming. Children with ADHD can work with a child behavioral expert to resolve the underlying cause of their troublesome symptoms. This type of program should include a physical exercise component, especially since clinical research has demonstrated that there is a strong connection between movement and a child’s ability to focus properly. 

Mind-Body Connection

Researchers have long known that the mind and the body mutually support each other. Research has shown that when children engage in a mentally challenging activity, they are able to focus better when they moved around. More movement was required when the mental task required the processing of information, which explains why children with ADHD are capable of sitting still to play a video game, yet they fidget in the classroom. Furthermore, researchers found that children with ADHD displayed a need to move around more than children with typical development. 

Physical Activity and Brain Activity

Researchers have found that physical activity affects the brain in several key ways. When a child moves around, his brain produces higher levels of neurotransmitters. Specifically, levels of dopamine and norepinephrine increase. These neurotransmitters are a type of chemical that are responsible for lengthening one’s attention span and improving the ability to focus.

Academic Engagement

Teachers have long known that the incidence rates of ADHD in the U.S. are at epidemic proportions. It’s perhaps unsurprising that some teachers have changed their classrooms to reflect the need for kids with ADHD to move around more than other kids. While this trend may not yet be widespread, some students can take advantage of desks that adjust to allow them to stand and that have moveable footrests for controlled fidgeting. And at least one high school has outfitted a special reading room with exercise bikes to allow kids to cycle while reading. Teachers who implement these changes rave about the enhanced ability of kids to engage with the academic material.

At The Brain Balance Achievement Centers, your child can work on a customized activity plan that includes physical exercises specifically designed to support cognitive function. We believe in a drug-free, whole-child approach to addressing child behavior issues. Parents are invited to schedule an assessment by calling our location in Southlake at (817) 416-9828.


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Brain Balance Achievement Centers offer the Brain Balance Program ® in 54 nationwide locations. The Brain Balance Program® is an individualized and comprehensive approach to helping children with neurobehavioral and learning difficulties surmount their unique challenges.

This proprietary, non-medical program has been successful in helping thousands of kids reach their physical, social/behavioral health and academic potential. We work with children who suffer with ADD/ADHD, Dyslexia, Tourette’s, Asperger’s and Autism Spectrum Disorders.

Today, City+School brain balance achievement centers
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