Physical Activities and Cognitive Behavior in Early Childhood

child's feet rock climbing

Cognitive development is an integral part of childhood; it is also the best period for it to develop. These types of behaviors include thinking learning; language and memory have been seen to be best developed during childhood than in adulthood. The effect of physical activities on these cognitive behaviors was studied and the result of this survey will be presented in this article.

Children were made to play sports as a case study of a physical activity that is vigorous. The result shows clearly that children that were made to undergo a measure of physical activities come out with a better developed cognitive behavior. Apart from influencing their cognitive pattern, physical activities were also seen to boost the emotional functions of such kids.

More Physical Activities vs. Less Physical Activities

With the changing lifestyles that are more associated with this period we live, various age groups too including children have also experienced a shift in lifestyle. People are less likely to engage in much physical activity today partly because of improvement in technology and partly because people prefer a sedentary kind of life.

This too has affected children as they now prefer sitting in front of the television for long hours as well as in front of computers. This trend has seen most children today neglect the physical activities known to help them develop most of their motor skills throughout their childhood.

The lesser the time children spend on physical activities, the less active they will be, and that too will impact on most of their cognitive functioning. This is fast becoming a problem that might affect the next generation as the children now might be tempted to be more lenient with the children they will give birth to too. You can read more in this article about Effective Child Therapy.

With decreased physical activity comes not just poorly developed motors but also the risk of health problems. For example, the same research shows that overweight or obese children are less likely to skip about or engage in sports, which might inadvertently lead to various health problems.

Read more about how to help develop and improve your child’s 7 senses through motor skills development and sensory integration here.

Other Effects of Physical Activities

Physical activities like sports have been conformed to prevent some somatic illnesses and pathological behaviors. These activities will eventually help such kids achieve some sort of equilibrium between self-control and being aggressive.  It also helps the child understand the importance of coping with the highs and lows of life, victories, and defeats, and also fosters a sense of belonging to a group.

Increased susceptibility to some risk behaviors among teenagers can directly be linked to a poorly developed cognitive-control system, a function of motor skills.


Considering common cognitive behaviors like language, thinking learning and memory, it is clear that the more a child engages in physical activities impacts more positively how they are developed.

So, with regards to the motor skills and how it relates to the developments of various cognitive behaviors in children, parents must do all they can to enable their children to engage in as many physical activities as possible. This article by ADDitude sums it up well.

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By Martha Campbell

Martin Campbell is a 27-year-old chef at chain restaurant who enjoys going to the movies, cookery and spreading right-wing propoganda. She is loveable and creative, but can also be very cowardly and a bit impatient.