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Obesity rise in primary school pupils highlights need for new integrated approach to child well-bein
The number of final year UK primary school children classed as obese has risen to 19% according to new NHS figures. New website Footee.com aims to help address this issue by leveraging children’s passion for sport to help them learn health skills.
Also commenting on the new figures, Tracy Parker from the British Heart Foundation said, "It has been shown that obese children are more likely to become obese adults. We've got to realise that children's food and lifestyle choices today could have long term consequences on their future health."
MotivatEd Ltd, the creators of innovative children’s National Curriculum and fitness site Footee.com, are passionate about boosting the amount and quality of beneficial physical activity that children partake in. Their football-themed gaming site actively encourages interest in sport and nutrition, and allows parents to reward their children with virtual prizes for performing physical activity.
Loughborough University recently carried out research that looked at the impact of Footee.com on the physical activity levels of primary school children, with exciting results. Levels of health-boosting activity were 39.2% higher in the test schools that used Footee to motivate pupils, compared to just a 14.2% increase exhibited by the non-Footee control schools.
The research findings led FA National Football Development Manager (Education), Donna McIvor, to say ‘We believe that the implication of these findings is likely to have a long-term and far-reaching impact on the way in which the internet is used to improve all aspects of a child’s wellbeing, both mental and physical.’
MotivatEd’s Footee website highlights the huge potential for idolised sports stars to influence positive behaviour in children. Talking on a BBC Radio 5 live sport special program broadcast on 14th December 2011, Didier Drogba said, “Forget being pop stars. Players have the potential to wield a far-reaching influence that most politicians can only envy. If they are so inclined, they could become the spokesmen of future generations.”
Recent partnerships with major football clubs have seen the arrival of multiple team-branded versions of the Footee site, including one for Chelsea Football Club, all of which are selectable on registration at the free-to-use site - at www.footee.com