Background: To evaluate the impact of a primary school-based physical activity (PA) integration program delivered by teachers on objectively measured PA and key educational outcomes.
Methods: Ten classes from 8 Australian public schools were randomly allocated to treatment conditions. Teachers from the intervention group were taught to embed movement-based learning in their students' (n = 142) daily mathematics program in 3 lessons per week for 6 weeks. The control group (n = 98) continued its regular mathematics program. The primary outcome was accelerometer-determined PA across the school day. Linear mixed models were used to analyze treatment effects.
Results: Significant intervention effects were found for PA across the school day (adjusted mean difference 103 counts per minute [CPM], 95% confidence interval [CI], 36.5-169.7, P = .008). Intervention effects were also found for PA (168 CPM, 95% CI, 90.1-247.4, P = .008) and moderate-to-vigorous PA (2.6%, 95% CI, 0.9-4.4, P = .009) in mathematics lessons, sedentary time across the school day (-3.5%, 95% CI, -7.0 to -0.13, P = .044) and during mathematics (-8.2%, CI, -13.0 to -2.0, P = .010) and on-task behavior (13.8%, 95% CI, 4.0-23.6, P = .011)-but not for mathematics performance or attitude.
Conclusion: Integrating movement across the primary mathematics syllabus is feasible and efficacious.