Devising physical challenges to keep students active at home

At Winmalee High, teachers have been devising ways to keep their students active as they study from home.

Greg Dutton, the head of Personal Development, Health and Physical Education, said students were being set physical challenges every week, which they selected from a range of options.

They could choose anything from walking the dog, to an online Zumba class, yoga, running, or shooting basketball hoops, to setting up a home exercise circuit.

The circuits created by students have included laps around the perimeter of their house, lifting cans of tinned food, and stair-based exercises.

Year seven and eight students are taking on the Premier's Sporting Challenge this term, and are expected to complete between two to 14 hours of physical activity a week, which they log at the end of each week.

"It's based on an honesty system. We just want the kids to try and be active," Mr Dutton said.

And it seems students like the new approach, with some opting for things they'd never tried before, such as a meditation app, and finding it useful.

An online group using the running and cycling app Strava, has also been set-up.

"They find it very motivating to look at what the others have been doing," Mr Dutton said.

Using Strava, the students are able to view each others' running and riding routes and times.

Year 7 student Hannah Gianatti uses Strava to track her runs and rides, and interact with others in the group.

"When I come back from a run, usually in the morning, I feel refreshed and ready to do school work," the 12 year old said.

"I feel good 'cause I feel like I'm actually doing something, than sitting there in self-isolation."