The Current

Classroom stationary bikes encourage kids to blow off steam while learning

A growing number of Canadian elementary schools have added stationary bikes in classrooms to help students focus on learning. Teachers have noticed an increase in attention span in class. The Current looks into the philosophy of "self-regulation" behind the program.
The tiny yellow bike is a symbol of a growing revolution in Canadian classrooms. Students used to be taught to stay quiet and still. Now, amid a shift in how educators understand and embrace various styles of learning, such bikes are helping to boost moods, relieve stress and regulate energy in students of all ages. (Darren Calabrese/CP)

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Education circles and school boards from Vancouver to Toronto to Halifax, are all adopting parts of a self-regulation mantra that includes stationary bikes in classrooms. The initiative is to help give kids the tools to understand and negotiate their emotions.

Proponents of the bike movement say bikes in classrooms calm students and improve their concentration and memory levels. The bikes are also useful in addressing kids who are fidgety or anxious. Proponents argue pedalling on bikes lets kids work off some of their energy. 

Teachers who have already implemented stationary bikes in the classroom have seen an increase in students' attention span with more engagement in the learning process, resulting in a significant improvement in academic achievement.

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This segment was produced Catherine Kalbfleisch, Shanifa Nasser and Julia Pagel.