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I enjoy taking my six-year-old for her one-block walk to school every day -- even though she regularly gripes that she wants to be driven like the rest of her friends. Apparently, the fact that it takes less time for us to walk than to load her and her sister into their car seats is beyond her comprehension.
It turns out, that walk may be good for her in one more way than I thought. According to new research from the University of Buffalo, a walk to school (or similar type of exercise) can help prep children for the stresses of school life. Kids in the study who had walked on a treadmill before taking a test had smaller spikes in their heart and breathing rates than kids who had experienced a simulated car ride -- and they reported feeling a lot less nervous under pressure. So a walk to school could keep your kid from being a bundle of nerves on test day, which might help them perform better.
A bonus: I find that our walk starts me off on the right foot (no pun intended) for my workday as well. This study could be yet another weapon in my arsenal of arguments for why we should all be hoofing it a lot more often.
Have you successfully worked more exercise into your kid's daily routine? Tell us how. Chime in below!