'Championing the rights of children'

School sport: Study suggests most pupils never shower after PE

Garry Sat 17 Jan 2015 09:20

More than half of secondary school boys and two-thirds of girls never shower after PE, a study suggests.

The paper, in the European Journal of Sports Sciences, concludes pupils who do not shower are less active.

The researchers, from the University of Essex, say these children may miss out on the health benefits of PE lessons.

Public Health England says schools have an important role to play in shifting attitudes to encourage physical activity.

This study says showering routinely after PE is extremely rare.

Nearly four thousand children took part in the study, from eight state secondary schools across Essex, covering urban, rural, affluent and deprived neighbourhoods.

All had hot working showers in male and female changing rooms.

The researchers say children may be holding back in PE lessons - and therefore missing out on the health benefits - because of anxiety about needing a shower.

'Less fit'
Those who did not shower were less active, and - among girls - less fit.

Just over one in two boys in the study said they never showered, about one in three said they did occasionally, and one in 10 said they always had a shower after PE.

Two out of three girls said they never took a shower after a PE lesson, and one in four said they did sometimes. About one in 13 said they always showered.

Read more... (BBC News - 17 January)