Department of physical education, Tolo Mehr Univerisy, Qom, Iran,
Allame tabatabai university
Physical inactivity is increasingly becoming a major public health concern in many countries. Afforded by technological advancement and the low demand of physical exertion in living, people in the modern societies, youth and adults alike, have been accustomed to the more sedentary lifestyles. Inadequate physical exertion, in conjunction with the easy access to energy dense diet, has led to dramatic increases in the prevalence of obesity. Obesity is a chronic disease that is associated with morbidities (e.g., cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes) and mortality. In the youth population, in particular, cost-effective preventive interventions with reasonable suitability in settings such as schools or preschools are warranted. Regular participation in physical activity helps reduce the health risk of childhood obesity and the associated chronic diseases. In addition, recent studies suggest that increased participation in physical activity influences cognitive functions in children, including executive functioning (e.g., working memory and cognitive flexibility) and brain health. More evidence is needed to enlighten the relationships between physical activity, health outcomes, and cognition during the critical period of child development, particularly early childhood. Therefore, my special issue is an attempt to stimulate more research efforts in such an important area.