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Teachers encouraged to offer pupils 'alternative games'

02/04/2009 Kelly
Teachers and school staff can help combat obesity in schools by offering pupils alternatives to traditional games, new figures suggest.

With health officials warning that, at the current rate, two-thirds of all UK pupils will be obese by 2050, new statistics released by Ofsted show that physical activities such as skateboarding and cheerleading can help encourage 'vulnerable' children to exercise.

Indeed, the introduction of such activities - along with yoga, tai chi and mountain biking - at the expense of traditional sports has been cited as a major factor behind the fact that the number of boys taking PE as a GCSE subject has risen by 16 per cent over the past couple of years.

Meanwhile, the number of girls choosing the subject has soared by 34 per cent over the same period, though Ofsted has maintained that more needs to be done to combat what it sees as the "increasingly sedentary lifestyles" of British children.

According to the department of education, around 90 per cent of UK schools offer pupils two hours of sport a week, with ministers keen to improve on this over the coming years.ADNFCR-2164-ID-19104246-ADNFCR
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