Gardening promotes healthy lifestyles among kids too
A new study has revealed that gardening, often considered to be an activity reserved for adults, is beneficial for children too and they can also reap the benefits of digging, raking, and weeding.
Researchers Sin-Ae Park, Ho-Sang Lee, Kwan-Suk Lee, Ki-Cheol Son, and Candice Shoemaker in South Korea said that the data can inform future development of garden-based programs that help engage children in physical activity and promote healthy lifestyles.
The research team studied 17 children as they engaged in 10 gardening tasks: digging, raking, weeding, mulching, hoeing, sowing seeds, harvesting, watering, mixing growing medium, and planting transplants.
The study was conducted in South Korea in two garden environments- a high tunnel, and an outdoor area. The children visited the gardens twice, and each child performed five different tasks during each visit.
They were given 5 minutes to complete each gardening task, and were allowed a 5-minute rest between each task. Results showed that the 10 gardening tasks represented moderate- to high-intensity physical activity for the children.
Digging and raking were categorized as "high-intensity" physical activities; digging was more intense than the other gardening tasks studied.
Tasks such as weeding, mulching, hoeing, sowing seeds, harvesting, watering, mixing growing medium, and planting transplants were determined to be "moderate-intensity" physical activities.
The study was published in the journal HortTechnology.
(Posted on 04-02-2014)
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