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The principal of stage school franchise opportunity LIPA 4:19 says sport isn't the only way to get children healthy and tackle the growing obesity epidemic.

Kerry Watkins said: "Too much focus is put on formal sports education as a means to tackle child obesity but this competitive environment can alienate some children and completely switch them off from exercise altogether."

The Government's decision to put 1,100 lifestyle coaches in primary schools to encourage children to become more active through fun activities is welcomed by Watkins.

"Making children more active and improving their health is the ultimate objective here and it's great to see some acceptance that sport isn't the only solution," she said.

"Performing arts can really help to develop confidence skills and bring children's personalities to the fore as well as provide a form of exercise.

"Shows like GLEE and High School Musical have done a lot for the popularity of performing arts with children of all shapes, sizes and backgrounds and have really boosted our student numbers."


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