Finland: Countryside children have better motor skills than those in towns

06 September 2019

Children living in the country spend more time outdoors and have better motor skills than those in towns, says a study of almost 1000 three- to seven-year-olds published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health.

Researchers from the University of Jyväskylä found that children took the opportunity to play outdoors when they had more space or larger gardens, giving them more ability than their peers in metropolitan areas to challenge themselves, practise more frequently, and improve motor skills.

Donna Niemistö from the Faculty of Sport and Health Sciences at the university concluded: ‘When planning the environment, one should take into consideration the safety, versatility and independency of the child’s opportunity to move around in an age-appropriate way.’

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