Sparking Life Niagara Background

Sparking Life Niagara is a program that integrates physical activity into secondary school classrooms. The program aims to improve physical and mental health as well as academic performance.

The program is based on the research of Dr. John Ratey, who has studied the use of physical activity in students.

According to his work, adding exercise into daily life improves physical and mental health, as well as academic performance in the following ways:

  • Improves memory, mood and behaviour
  • Improves motivation, wellness and attention spans
  • Lowers anxiety and depression
  • Improves self-esteem

Sparking Life Niagara will be running a flexible program in 2013/2014 which will include:

1. Large equipment

Students use existing large aerobic equipment to participate in a minimum of 20 minutes of activity working at 65-85 per cent of their maximum heart rate each day.

2. Activity toolkits

A select group of schools will receive activity toolkits which include smaller aerobic equipment designed to implement 5-10 minute energy boosts during class time to help students re-focus on learning.

Community Partnerships

The following organizations are partners for the Sparking Life Niagara program:

  • Niagara Region Public Health
  • Public Health Ontario
  • Niagara Sport Commission
  • District School Board of Niagara and Niagara Catholic District School Board

Exercise equipment is provided through Sport Chek's Power of Sport for Kids Program.

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