School of Population and Global Health

Play Spaces and Environments for Children's Physical Activity

two happy little girls on a bike

Play Spaces and Environments for Children’s Physical Activity (PLAYCE) Study is Healthway funded research  conducted by the School of Population and Global Health at The University of Western Australia.

This research will determine which features of the childcare centre environment promote or discourage physical activity in pre-school aged children. 

  • Physical activity, such as active play, has many health benefits for young children including developing healthier bones, maintaining a healthy weight, and improving cognitive and social development.

  • Childcare is an important place for physical activity promotion as many young Australian children aged 3-6 years attend a childcare centre. In WA, more than nine out of ten children attending childcare spend 10-14 hours a week there. Past research has shown that the childcare centre attended can affect how much physical activity pre-schoolers do.
  • The PLAYCE study will measure how much physical activity preschool children aged 2-5 years do while attending childcare and at home. PLAYCE will assess the environmental influences on children's physical activity, such as availability of outdoor running space and play equipment.

  • PLAYCE is the first large scale study of its kind to be done in WA. The research team is working with the Western Australian early education and care sector to ensure the findings inform best practice recommendations to promote physical activity, health and development in childcare settins in line with the National Quality Framework for Early Childhood Education and Care.
  • To represent a range of difference childcare centres in WA and maximise the quality of the research we would like as many childcare centres as possible to be involved.


We have new professional development workshops on offer for childcare centres:

  • The Fundamental Movement Skills workshop looks at teaching the importance of fundamental movement skills development in children and how to integrate them into daily activities.
  • The Nature Based Outdoor Play workshop looks at outdoor learning and play design. It aims to increase the amount of time children are exposed to outdoor nature based play whilst attending childcare.

Get involved

To find out more about the study or the workshops, please contact the PLAYCE team:





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Last updated:
Wednesday, 1 February, 2017 11:03 AM