Over 600 children from primary and secondary schools in Tower Hamlets took to Victoria Park on Friday 5 July to take part in the Daily Mile celebration event.
The Daily Mile encourages children and young people to run, walk or skip for approximately 10 – 15 minutes around their school playground each day, as well as enjoying their usual morning and lunchtime breaks.
The celebratory event coincided with London Marathon’s attempt to set a London record for the most children doing the Daily Mile at the same time. The day saw thousands of children across the capital take part.
Councillor Danny Hassell, Cabinet Member for Children, Schools and Young People, and Dr Somen Banerjee, Director of Public Health cheered the children on while running alongside them.
John Biggs, Mayor of Tower Hamletssaid: “Ensuring children are given the opportunities and support to live healthier and happier lives is one of our top priorities. Regular exercise is vital in maintaining a healthy lifestyle and we hope initiatives like this will help to ingrain healthy habits for life.”
The council’s healthy lives team has continued to make sure that Tower Hamlets has the highest percentage of primary schools engaged with the Daily Mile compared to any other London borough. Sixty per cent of schools in the borough are now engaged with the Daily Mile since it began three years ago.
Tower Hamlets also has the most schools with a Healthy School Award and 93 per cent of Tower Hamlets schools have Healthy School Status. This means that schools have excelled in areas such as healthy food choices and water consumption, increased physical activity and improving mental health in the classroom.
Councillor Danny Hassell, Cabinet Member for Children, Schools and Young Peoplesaid: “Completing a mile of exercise every day will help children get into a good routine with their health and running alongside the children at our celebration event meant I could see just how much they enjoy getting involved. We want to work with schools to see this worthwhile scheme continue to grow so that every child can get a healthy start to life.”
In a short period of time, the Daily Mile has become an important national initiative to promote the health and wellbeing of school children and lay the foundation for healthy habits in their future lives. It has been implemented across over 2,000 schools in the UK and in over 3,100 schools worldwide.
Teachers have recorded an improvement in pupils’ physical and mental health as well as improved concentration in the classroom and, in some cases, better behaviour.