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China's cram school fever shifts to athletics following crackdown

Greater emphasis on fitness in entrance exams drives trend

Middle school students attend physical education class in Sichuan Province in 2020. Chinese schools have been placing a greater focus on athleticism in recent years.   © Reuters

BEIJING -- The Chinese government's tighter regulations on academic tutoring has fueled a cottage industry of sports-centered classes that have captured demand from exam-focused parents.

"This winter, each ski class had 700 children and students, which is nearly nine times the 80 people that came two years ago," said a person who requested to go by the name Zhang and runs athletics-themed classes in Beijing.

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