Joe Wicks got children moving – how to keep them active as lockdown ends

Doctoral Researcher from the Institute for Sport Business, Stan Windsor, discusses how physical education has been re-imagined during lockdown and how we can continue to keep children active in The Conversation.

When parents in the UK were suddenly forced to become teachers to their kids in lockdown, physical education (PE) was largely an afterthought. As many PE lessons are now delivered by outside professional coaches, few primary schools had the in-house experience or skills to create and suggest content to help parents.

Instead, many turned to fitness guru Joe Wicks. His PE with Joe, a 30-minute live workout streamed on YouTube every weekday at 9am, was launched almost immediately following the closure of schools across the UK.

The videos are based on Wicks’ brand of high-intensity interval training (HIIT) – intense, repetitive exercises with short breaks – but are aimed at children. Exercises included star jumps and “Pikachus”, and on Fridays Wicks and his audience worked out in fancy dress.

Wicks is to be applauded for getting more children and their parents thinking about and taking part in exercise, showing them it can fit into their daily lives. But what will happen as lockdown comes to an end?

A different kind of PE

Throughout lockdown, exercise has been lauded as both a coping mechanism through the restrictions and...

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Find out more about Stan Windsor's PhD within the Institute for Sport Business.

Loughborough is one of the country’s leading universities, with an international reputation for research that matters, excellence in teaching, strong links with industry, and unrivalled achievement in sport and its underpinning academic disciplines.

It has been awarded five stars in the independent QS Stars university rating scheme, named the best university in the world for sports-related subjects in the 2020 QS World University Rankings and top in the country for its student experience in the 2018 THE Student Experience Survey.

Loughborough is in the top 10 of every national league table, being ranked 4th in the Guardian University League Table 2020, 5th in the Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2020 and 8th in The UK Complete University Guide 2020.

Loughborough is consistently ranked in the top twenty of UK universities in the Times Higher Education’s ‘table of tables’ and is in the top 10 in England for research intensity. In recognition of its contribution to the sector, Loughborough has been awarded seven Queen's Anniversary Prizes.

Specialising exclusively in postgraduate-level study, Loughborough University London is based on the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park and offers cutting-edge master’s and PhD degrees, as well as business collaboration, research and enterprise opportunities.

The seven specialist institutes at Loughborough University London include: Design Innovation, Digital Technologies, Diplomacy and International Governance, Innovation and Entrepreneurship, International Management, Media and Creative Industries, and Sport Business. Close industry partnerships with a wealth of leading businesses and creative organisations means teaching and learning is informed by real-life challenges and driven by true industry pressures.