II. Current Researches
As President Wen Jiabao pointed out in this year’s government work report that students in primary and secondary schools shall be guaranteed to take one hour for sports activities at school every day. The writing down of “an hour’s daisy exercise” in the government work report, which centers on our national interests and people’s livelihood, has elevated the idea to the will of the state, illustrating to the full the importance our Party and government have attached to the youth’s physical qualities and PE at school. At the early stage when the People’s Republic of China was founded, comrade Mao Zedong emphasized on several occasions: “We should pay attention that health ranks first, study second.” And since reform and opening-up, comrade Deng Xiaoping reiterated that physical education not only forms an important aspect of the construction of a socialist society with advanced culture and ideology, but also shows a nation’s economic achievements. Comrade Jiang Zemin have also pointed out in several cases that physical education is essential to people’s health and also an important indicator of a nation’s civilization progress. Ever since the new century, the CPC central committee led by General Secretary comrade Hu jintao has adhered to the people-oriented scientific development concept and paid special attention to the public’s health. The 16th National Congress of CPC pushed forward that the enhancement of the entire nation’s physical quality, ideological and ethical standards, and scientific and cultural standards will be the major targets for the nationwide construction of a well-off society. Based on the guidelines that health ranks first, we shall strengthen in a practical sense the physical education for the youth, which is, on the one hand, a requirement from the principle of centering on the cultivation of people to facilitate their all-around development and, on the other hand, of great significance to the full implementation of the Party’s educational policy, overall enhancement of the youth’s quality and demonstration of our nation’s spiritual status. And we have conducted 7 nationwide investigations and surveys on students’ physical qualities since the founding of PRC, with the recent one performed in 2010.The results from this survey showed that development index reflecting student’s growth, including height, weight, chest circumference, etc, have been on continuous rise, and morbidity rate on anemia and dental caries on the decline. However, all the rest index showing students’ physical qualities are, to some extent, worse than before, for example, their upper body strength is on the decline, the proportion of overweight and obese students continuously goes up and so is the number of students with poor eyesight. Endurance, strength, explosive force and speed shows student’s physical qualities and better performance on these aspects are closely related to the quantity of physical exercises done. Scientific researches show that a daily one hour’s aerobic exercises will consume the excess fat stored in our bodies and raise our endurance, strength, speed and other physical qualities. However, such benefits are less obvious at present due to our lack of time for exercises. Thus it can be said that a daily one hour’s exercises will have visible effects on students’ body building and improvement of their quality. Except China, many other countries have also put forward the concept of “exercising one hour every day”, which has been guaranteed by government policies and measures, for instance, the newly-issued exercise guidelines by America has required that children shall be guaranteed to take one hour to do some running and jumping every day, and in Canada some tax refund policies are in place to encourage actions beneficial to children’s health, such as children above 10 years old shall have at least a daily one hour’s time for exercises, and the expenditures of schools for arranging extra-curriculum sports activities will enjoy a tax refund, etc. Though currently we have good policies and systems, the physical quality of the youth depends on many factors, such as schools, families, students themselves, and is correlated with people’s ideology, investment, related systems and other elements. As a result, the phenomenon of practicing differently from what is advocated and said is widespread.