Physical education

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Physical instruction at the U.S. Naval Training Station, Newport, Rhode Island, 1917
Physical instruction at the U.S. Naval Training Station, Newport, Rhode Island, 1917

Physical education (PE) is the interdisciplinary study of all areas of science relating to the transmission of physical knowledge and skills to an individual or a group, the application of these skills, and their results. Included, among other subjects, are aspects of anthropology, biology, chemistry, physics, psychology, and sociology. Some treatments of the discipline also include spirituality as an important aspect.

In most educational systems, physical education (PE), also called physical training (PT) or gym, though each with a very different connotation, is a course in the curriculum which utilizes learning in the cognitive, affective and psychomotor domains in a play or movement explorating the setting. The term physical education is most commonly used in this way; however, this denotes rather that "they have participated in the subject area, not studied it."[1]

The primary aims of physical education vary historically, based on the needs of the time and place. Often, many different types of physical education occur simultaneously, some intentionally and others not. Most modern, Western, school systems claim their intent is to equip students with the knowledge, skills, capacities, and values along with the enthusiasm to maintain a healthy lifestyle into adulthood. Some schools also require physical education as a way to promote weight loss in students. Activities included in the program are designed to promote physical fitness, to develop motor skills, to instill knowledge and understanding of rules, concepts, and strategies, and to teach students to work as part of a team, or as individuals, in a wide variety of competitive activities.


[edit] History

Physical education has existed since the earliest stages of humanity, in areas as simple the transmission of knowledge of basic survival skills, such as hunting. However, the real history of physical education is in the changing methodologies used to transmit physical skills and, to a lesser extent, the varying intentions of the educator.

The first known literary reference to an athletic competition is preserved in the ancient Greek text, the Iliad, by Homer.[2] While by no means is this the beginning of physical activity, it marks an important point in the study of the history of physical education. Other cultures that existed before the Greeks, including the ancient Chinese, Indian, and Egyptian civilizations had traditions of physical education and activity, but the Greek influence is argued to be the most fundamental to how the discipline is viewed today.[3] The ancient Greek tradition of the Olympic Games, which originated in the early 8th century BC, even continues today.

The rate of participation in physical activity by American adolscents has decreased dramatically over the last decade.

[edit] School curricula

In the United States, the physical education curriculum is designed to allow students to experience at least a minimum exposure to the following categories of activities: aquatics, conditioning activities, gymnastics, individual/dual sports, team sports, rhythms, and dance. Students are encouraged to continue to explore those activities in which they have a primary interest by effectively managing their community resources. In these areas, a planned sequence of learning experiences is designed to support a progression of student development.

In all states in the United States, physical education is offered to students from grades K to 12. However, Illinois is the only state that requires physical education in all schools (even private schools) for all grade levels.[citation needed] Mandatory physical education is up to each individual State and school district. Most states do require physical education 6th-9th grade and offer "elective" physical education classes 10th-12th grades.[citation needed] Many school districts, especially those with limited budgets, cut back or eliminate on physical education from the curriculum. {Fact|date=February 2007}} About two dozen states required physical education in secondary schools in 2001, that number has since gone down.[citation needed]

In Canada, physical education is required up to grade 10[citation needed], although some provinces are considering extending this to grade 12.[citation needed] In the United States, individual states determine the requirement for physical education in their schools; requirements in middle schools and high schools vary widely from state to state.

In the United Kingdom, sports like netball, cricket and rugby are also played. The leading body for physical education in the United Kingdom is the Association for Physical Education. The Association for Physical Education reccomends that school pupils participate in at least 2 hours of high quality physical education inside curriculum time each week.

In France, physical education is required from age 6 to age 16 (mandatory schooling period).[citation needed] It is actually taught by specialized state teachers to all secondary school students, mostly in coeducational classes : 4 hours/week at age 11, 3 hours/week from age 12 to 15 and 2 hours/week from age 16 to 18.[citation needed] National programs and contents refer to the contemporary physical culture: sports, dance and circus.

In Romania and Moldova, oina (which is similar to baseball), rugby, basketball and soccer are popular sports played in PE classes.

In New Zealand and Australia, softball, cricket, Australian rules football and sometimes rugby are played.

In Japan, physical education is more like what are known as health classes in the United States, although some Japanese high schools, especially in Hokkaidō, have the more common version.

In Sweden, sports like floorball and brännboll are played, along with internationally known sports such as soccer, basketball and volleyball.

In Spain, sports like soccer, basketball, handball and volleyball are played from primary education to bachillerato.

[edit] Clothing

The majority of schools require pupils to change into a different set of trainers or go barefoot. A common uniform consists of a white t-shirt and shorts in the school color, but this is not a universal rule. For safety, some schools require boys / men to wear an athletic supporter as part of the physical education uniform.

Occasionally, certain activities will require a special uniform. For example, some schools require swimming as part of the physical education curriculum. In this case, students typically have to wear a bathing suit in either the school color or black with a swimming cap of the same color. Also, in games with two or more teams, students usually have to wear colored jerseys or cape-like garments over the usual uniform as a way of identifying team members.

[edit] See also

[edit] References

  1. ^ Anderson, D. (1989). The Discipline and the Profession. Foundations of Canadian Physical Education, Recreation, and Sports Studies. Dubuque, IA: Wm. C. Brown Publishers.
  2. ^ Gensemer, R.E. (1985). Physical Education: Perspecitves, Inquiry, Applications. Philadelphia, PA: CBS College Publishing.
  3. ^ Freeman, W.H. (1987) Physical Education and Sport in a Changing Society. (3rd ed.). New York, NY: Macmillan Publishing Company.
  • Pangrazi, R. P. (2002). Dynamic Physical Education for Secondary School Students (4th ed.). San Francisco, CA: Benjamin Cummings.
  • Pangrazi, R. P. (2004). Dynamic Physical Education for Elementary School Children (14th ed.). Menlo Park, CA: Addison-Wesley.
  • Siedentop, D., Hastie, P. A., & van der Mars, H. (2004). Complete Guide to Sport Education. Champaign, IL: Human Kinetics.
  • Pérez García, Á., Molina Jiménez, J.A., Millán Galindo, J.D. "Spanish Education". 2005.
  • C. Jensen & S. Overman. Administration and Management of physical education and Athletic Programs. 4th edition. Waveland Press, 2003.
  • J. Stillwell & C. Willgoose. The Physical Education Curriculum. 5th edition. Waveland Press, 2002.
  • D. Siedentop. Introduction to Physical Education, Fitness, and Sport. McGraw Hill, 2003
  • D. Van Dalen. A World History of Physical Education: Cultural, Philosophical, Comparative. 2nd edition. Prentice-Hall, 1971.
  • Kelly E. Duell, M.A. "Standard-Based Physical Education: Complete Lesson Plans for Children." 1st edition. Human Kinetics, 2006-2007.

[edit] External links

  • AAHPERD American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation & Dance
  • CAHPERD Canadian Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation & Dance
  • NAKPEHE National Association for Kinesiology and Physical Education in Higher Education
  • SSDHPER Society of State Directors of Health, Physical Education & Recreation
  • afPE Association for Physical Education (United Kingdom)
  • PE4Life Non-profit Physical Education advocacy group
  • PE Central Resources for Health and Physical Education
  • Sports Media Tool for everyone interested in Physical Education & Sports