Research shows that children’s daily physical exercise takes place during the
school day and that straightforward means can be used to motivate children
towards becoming more physically active. The system used by Hookie
Technologies Ltd for their research is based on algorithms developed by VTT
Technical Research Centre of Finland. These automatically identify the person
exercising and the type and amount of exercise being performed. (Hookie's
press release 3.6.2010)
"The technology is based on VTT developed solution and patented methods. With
these methods the devices carried by the user can determine the identity of
the user and recognize the specific type of exercise e.g. walking, cycling or
jogging. These methods are an example of ubiquitous technology where physical
world and information technology merge closer together. VTT develops
ubiquitous technology in Open Smart Spaces program.
part in the research were three classes from Isoniittu School in Klaukkala.
For six days the children each wore one of the system’s exercise meters. This
was the first time that children’s daily physical exercise was being examined
in this way – a large sample using exercise meters – instead of through
straight interview. Research was realised in cooperation with the Young
Finland Association (Nuori Suomi ry).
Information on the
amount of exercise and its distribution throughout the day was gathered during
the research, together with mapping of Internet and console game use and
parents’ attitudes towards exercise motivation for their children.
daily physical exercise takes place at school
daily physical exercise occurred for the most part during the school day. This
included mornings and the journey to and from school. This was more clearly
evident in the older age groups; physical exercise of first year pupils was
spread more evenly through the day. The younger groups were also more active
at the weekend.
Nearly all parents reported encouraging their
child to exercise, although only one in five children were rewarded for doing
so, compared to a shade over half who helped with housework.
amount of children’s exercise can be influenced
the morning gathering of data on physical exercise children saw the amount of
exercise they were doing and the entertaining virtual reward generated by it.
The simple reward model inspired the children towards self-monitoring and
resulted in an increase in physical exercise performed during the period of
Lack of exercise among children and adolescents
a growing problem
The lack of physical exercise and poor
dietary habits among children and adolescents are causing obesity and major
health problems. For the first time an emerging generation possesses a lower
life expectancy than its parent.
Implementers of the
Hookie Technologies Ltd develops new kinds of
products and services for motivating children and young people to physical
The Young Finland Association
(Nuori Suomi ry) is an independent organisation tasked with fostering the
well-being and joy of life of children and youth through physical activity and