Assoc. Prof. Dr. G. BALASEKARAN

Innovations in Physical Activities Implemented in Singapore’s Primary School

In conjuction with United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UNSDG) #3 Health and Well-Being and #4 Quality Education, innovation and technology has been integrated into Singapore’s primary school. The study investigated the effects of short PA breaks using Brain Breaks by Hopsports during lessons in the classrooms. A total of 114 students participated, separated into 2 groups, experimental group whereby short PA breaks were implemented during lessons (EXP, 48 students, age: 9.71 ± 0.99 years, weight: 34.91 ± 10.97 kg, height: 1.37 ± 0.08 m) and control group whereby lessons were carried out per normal (CON, 66 students, age: 9.67 ± 0.93 years, weight: 35.28 ± 10.54 kg, height: 1.38 ± 0.09 m). EXP underwent 3 to 5 minutes of short PA for five days weekly for 10 weeks during lessons. Attitudes toward Physical Activity Scale (APAS) was administered during pre- and post-intervention. Results indicated that there were significant improvements between pre- and post-EXP in their positive atittudes towards PA (POS) and using technology during PA (TECH) (PRE-POS: 3.06 ± 0.51, POST-POS: 3.25 ± 0.45, p = 0.02); PRE-TECH: 2.80 ± 3.18, POST-TECH: 3.18 ± 0.61, p = 0.01). Significant differences were also found between post-EXP and CON in learning technology (POST-EXP vs POST-CON: 3.18 ± 0.61, 2.34 ± 1.01, p = 0.00; 3.30 ± 1.18, 2.78 ± 0.91, p = 0.01). No significant difference was found within CON. Short PA breaks help improve students’ attitudes towards PA. This may help develop and sustain students’ holistic health for long-term.



President, Asian Council of Exercise and Sports Science (ACESS)
American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) Health/Fitness Director®
Former Head of Physical Education and Sports Science
Former Programme Director of Sport Science and Management
Physical Education & Sports Science
National Institute of Education
Nanyang Technological University




Assoc. Prof. Dr. G. Balasekaran is an Associate Professor at the Physical Education & Sports Science academic group, National Institute of Education, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. His research projects include physiological responses in exercise and adaptations to health and sports performance, also investigating the influence of genetic factors on exercise related outcomes. He is currently actively involved in investigating physiological predictors of human performance. In addition, he is very well versed in the knowledge of sports science and its application in track & field. Dr Bala obtained his PhD from the University of Pittsburgh, USA and has published many research papers, abstracts, proceedings papers and book chapters in mostly first rated journals and books in the area of Sports Science and Physical Education. Dr Bala had represented Singapore in numerous long distance running events and had won medals in various international and local meets. He had also raced in the various States and Regional College meets in the USA and most notably qualified and raced in the prestigious National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) cross-country championships in USA at Humboldt University. Currently he is a volunteer coach, coaching national long distance athletes – coached athletes to national records. He is also heading the Brain Breaks project in collaboration with Fuhua Primary School to make it a UNSGD laboratory in Singapore.