Why is Physical Education Important? Benefits of PE (Latest)
Physical Education is Important for several reasons, as it has a wide range of benefits for individuals of all ages. Here are some of the key reasons why physical education is important:
- Physical Health: Regular physical activity helps improve physical health by increasing cardiovascular fitness, building muscle strength and endurance, and maintaining a healthy weight. It also reduces the risk of various chronic diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, and obesity.
- Mental Health: Physical education has a positive impact on mental health by reducing symptoms of anxiety and depression. It releases endorphins, which are natural mood lifters and help individuals cope with stress.
- Motor Skills: Physical education programs help develop and refine motor skills such as coordination, balance, and agility. These skills are not only important for sports but also for daily activities and tasks.
- Teamwork and Cooperation: Many physical education activities involve teamwork and cooperation, which teach important social skills like communication, problem-solving, and conflict resolution. Learning to work together in a physical context can translate to better collaboration in other areas of life.
- Discipline and Goal Setting: Physical education encourages discipline and goal setting. Students learn the importance of setting goals, working toward them, and achieving success through effort and dedication.
- Lifelong Fitness Habits: Physical education programs aim to instill a love for physical activity and fitness that lasts a lifetime. Exposing individuals to a variety of sports and activities, it helps them find activities they enjoy and are more likely to continue as adults.
More Importance of PE…
- Improved Academic Performance: Research has shown that regular physical activity can have a positive impact on academic performance. It can improve concentration, memory, and cognitive function.
- Healthy Lifestyle Choices: Physical education can educate individuals about the importance of a healthy lifestyle, including nutrition and the dangers of substance abuse. It helps promote informed decision-making regarding health-related behaviors.
- Prevention of Obesity: With the rising rates of childhood obesity, physical education plays a crucial role in preventing and addressing this issue. It promotes physical fitness and encourages healthy eating habits.
- Socialization and Inclusivity: Physical education classes provide opportunities for socialization and inclusivity. Students interact with peers from diverse backgrounds and abilities, promoting tolerance and understanding.
- Stress Relief: Physical activity is an effective way to relieve stress and improve mental well-being. Engaging in physical education can help students manage the pressures of school and life.
- Overall Well-Being: Physical education contributes to an individual’s overall well-being by promoting a balanced and healthy lifestyle. It enhances the quality of life by keeping individuals physically and mentally fit.
In summary, physical education is important because it contributes to both physical and mental well-being, teaches essential life skills, and promotes a healthy, active lifestyle that can lead to a longer, happier, and more fulfilling life. It is an integral part of a comprehensive education that prepares individuals for a healthy and successful future.
Benefits Of Physical Education
Physical education (PE) offers a wide range of benefits for individuals of all ages. Here are some of the key benefits of physical education:
- Physical Fitness: PE helps individuals improve their physical fitness by promoting regular physical activity. It enhances cardiovascular health, muscular strength, endurance, and flexibility.
- Health Promotion: Regular participation in PE can reduce the risk of chronic diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, obesity, and certain types of cancer. It encourages a healthy lifestyle and promotes overall well-being.
- Motor Skill Development: PE programs focus on developing and refining motor skills, including coordination, balance, agility, and fine motor skills. These skills are essential for various physical activities and daily tasks.
- Mental Health: Physical activity in PE classes has a positive impact on mental health. It releases endorphins, which can improve mood and reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression.
- Stress Reduction: Engaging in physical activity can help students and individuals manage stress more effectively. It provides a healthy outlet for pent-up energy and tension.
- Improved Academic Performance: Research has shown that regular physical activity can lead to improved academic performance. It enhances cognitive function, concentration, and memory.
- Social Skills: PE often involves team sports and cooperative activities, fostering the development of social skills such as communication, teamwork, leadership, and conflict resolution.
- Discipline and Goal Setting: PE encourages discipline and goal setting. Students learn the importance of setting fitness goals, working toward them, and tracking progress.
Extra Benefits of PE…
- Inclusivity: Good PE programs promote inclusivity by accommodating individuals with various abilities and skill levels. This helps create an inclusive and supportive learning environment.
- Lifelong Fitness Habits: PE aims to instill a love for physical activity and fitness that lasts a lifetime. It exposes individuals to a variety of sports and activities, helping them find activities they enjoy and are more likely to continue as adults.
- Body Confidence: Engaging in PE can improve body confidence and self-esteem. As individuals develop physical skills and fitness, they may gain a more positive self-image.
- Healthy Lifestyle Education: PE can educate individuals about the importance of a healthy lifestyle, including nutrition, the dangers of substance abuse, and making informed decisions about their health.
- Time Management: Participation in PE classes helps individuals learn how to manage their time effectively, as they must balance academic studies with physical activity.
- Physical Literacy: PE teaches individuals the fundamentals of movement and physical literacy, ensuring they have the skills and knowledge needed to participate in a wide range of physical activities.
- Fun and Enjoyment: PE classes can be enjoyable and fun, encouraging students to view physical activity as a source of pleasure rather than a chore.
- Community and School Spirit: Participation in team sports and group activities can foster a sense of community and school spirit, promoting a positive school culture.
Overall, Physical Education plays a crucial role in promoting physical and mental well-being, developing essential life skills, and encouraging a healthy and active lifestyle. It contributes to the holistic development of individuals and prepares them for a healthier and more successful future.
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Why Physical Education Is Important
You already know that physical activity is an important part of your child’s health. But the benefits of physical education in schools go beyond the advantages of physical activity. Read on for some of the ways that physical education can improve your child’s health, happiness and overall well-being.
Physical Education Explained
Physical education, or PE, is a school subject that follows a curriculum based on the national standards for physical education for each grade level. In addition to giving kids a designated time to get exercise during the school day, PE also contributes to developing their cognitive skills, motor skills and emotional health. Studies have shown that kids who regularly attend PE are almost three times as likely to be physically active outside of school and nearly twice as likely to be active in adulthood.
Guidelines recommend that kids get at least 60 minutes of physical activity every day, and PE is a great way to help get those minutes in. Regular exercise builds strong bones and muscles as well as burns calories, and developing the habit when kids are young makes them much more likely to continue to take good care of themselves when they are adults. Exercising regularly can prevent obesity and decrease the likelihood of developing serious illnesses, such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes, cancer and osteoporosis.
Studies have shown that kids who participate in PE have improved concentration, memory and classroom behavior. These perks lead to better academic performance, including higher grades and standardized test scores. Plus, kids who are physically active miss fewer days of school and have better long-term academic success.
Kids who stay active are happier than those who don’t. This is because exercise builds confidence, promotes better sleep and produces endorphins, which are natural mood boosters. This can give kids a more positive outlook on life and help them to feel good about themselves.
If your physically active child experiences an injury, Augusta Health is here to help. Contact a provider at Pediatric Sports Medicine at the Children’s Hospital of Georgia at Augusta University .
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Why is physical education a student’s most important subject?
by Paul Mendoza
William Edward “Bill” Simon Jr. is a Partner of Simon Quick Advisors, a firm that provides wealth management, investment consulting, and family office services to its clients.
Prior to becoming a partner at Simon Quick Advisors, he was Co-Chairman of William E. Simon & Sons, L.L.C. an investment firm that he co-founded in 1988 with his brother, Peter, and their father, William E. Simon, Sr., former U.S. Secretary of the Treasury.
Simon earned a BA from Williams College in 1973, and a JD from Boston College in 1982.
Let’s start with a pop quiz. Can you name the only subject in school that promotes physical and emotional health, helps children learn better, and cultivates the character that they need to be productive adults?
I think some people out there got an A. It’s physical education. I believe that physical education should be a core subject, just like math, English, science, and history.
But that’s not the way it works today. All too often, PE is treated as the least important subject versus the most important subject, which is how it should be. Children need to succeed of course in academic subjects, and by the way, exercise helps them do better in academic subjects. But principles of health and fitness, they are vital in the truest sense of that word. Literally, the students’ lives depend upon it.
Think about it. If a student has trouble with math, maybe they won’t be such good budgeters. If a student has trouble confusing an adjective with an adverb, maybe they won’t be a great author. Or maybe they don’t understand the workings of a cell, they may not be a good biologist. But if a student doesn’t understand the principles of health and fitness, they risk chronic disease and an early death.
So my vision is that every school should provide every student with the opportunities that’ll give them a healthy start in life and also with the education and skills that’ll give them a fit lifetime.
Unfortunately in today’s school system there are not adequate resources that are devoted to physical education, whether it’s because of competing priorities or whether it’s because they undervalue physical education. The median annual budget for physical education in schools, for an entire school, is $764 for the whole school, for all children. That boils down literally to pennies per pupil.
Now there’s plenty of money for PE. It’s a matter of priorities. It’s not a matter of resources. My wife Cindy and I 20 years ago tried to address this issue and change the narrative about physical education. We started a program that’s now called UCLA Health Sound Body Sound Mind. As we put physical fitness equipment in schools, we have a curriculum, we have training for physical education teachers. Today we’re in 151 schools. We impact over 185,000 children every year.
We know the problem and the solution. And there’s a lot more to be done, locally, nationally, and even globally. We know that robust physical education helps children become better learners, better versions of themselves, and better people for tomorrow.
Now I know the transformative impact of exercise, both professionally and personally. This is our son Willie. He has autism. He’s 31 years old. He’s thriving in a residential home. He works at Home Depot, as you can see. He paints amazing seascapes.
It wasn’t always that way. For many years he struggled with behavioral issues. My wife and I were concerned about his weight, which had soared to over 220 pounds. That’s a lot for even a six-footer like Willie.
Then six years ago, a wise member of Willie’s care team said, “Let’s have Willie do some exercise.” And he went on a treadmill, in the beginning 20 minutes. Now he’s ramped up to two hours a day. He runs in local races. I’ve tried to run a few with him. I can’t keep up with him. The results have been spectacular.
Willie was diagnosed at the age of three, and for the last 20 years he has been on meds and therapy of some kind. But I’m here to tell you, ladies and gentlemen, that the best therapy, the best med he’s ever had, is exercise. (applause)
Now there’s compelling evidence that exercise helps your bodies and brains. First, with respect to academic outcomes, the Institute of Medicine found that reading and math are the subjects that are most impacted by exercise. They also found that reading and math require a good executive function, and they also found that there is a link between a good executive function and exercise. Even moderate exercise seems to help quite a bit.
In Neuroscience Magazine, a study reported that a group of nine-year-olds were given cognitive tasks, and they, in some instances, they walked beforehand. And what happened was there was significant improvement in their performance versus when they didn’t walk beforehand.
In Naperville, Illinois, eighth graders were given a math test. In cases where they had 30 minutes of vigorous exercise, they performed 11 to 22 percent better. It’s clear. Even a moderate amount of exercise goes a long way. So if you had just a slight change in priorities, a slight change in resources, there would be a substantial change in learning by our students.
Dr. John Ratey, a Harvard neuroscientist, explains why this is so. He says exercise releases a cascade of neurochemicals and other growth factors that bolster the brain’s infrastructure. Dr. Ratey said exercise is Miracle-Gro for the brain.
He said there are basically three reasons for this. First, exercise optimizes your mindset, improving your alertness and your motivation. Second, exercise helps cells bind together, which is a way that the brain holds information. And third, exercise actually helps create new nerve cells in the hippocampus, which is the center for learning and memory. Exercise, it turns out, helps the brain structures in many many ways.
Let’s talk about mental health. You saw what happened with our son Willie. The Mayo Clinic did a study where they found that endorphins that are released upon exercise, you know they’re the brain’s neurotransmitters and the feel-good effect, it has an impact on mild cases of depression and anxiety. Turns out that exercise is a low-cost, effective, natural way to deal with life’s stressors.
Think about socially. These days, many of us spend a lot of time on screens, particularly students. There’s a lot of loneliness that scientists are finding right now. Exercise addresses that social aspect, and the maturation by having other people to work out with. So we have found more and more research on covering how exercise helps the body, the mind, and the emotions.
So we should consider as well what happens when there, there is no exercise. Inactivity is dangerous and widespread to the point that Lancet Journal, which is a respected British medical journal, has called inactivity the new smoking.
Now it’s clear that inactivity is a core cause of obesity. There’s others, whether it’s a sedentary lifestyle, whether it’s the undervaluing of physical exercise, whether it’s urban living, whether it’s safety factors. One thing is clear: that the incidence of obesity has exploded. It’s doubled amongst children since the 1980s. During that same period, amongst adolescents it’s tripled.
A third of American children today are overweight. Fourteen million American children are obese. Fourteen million. That is unacceptable.
The impacts of obesity are profoundly disturbing. The World Health Organization characterized several. They said that obese children tend to be bullied at school; they have low self-esteem; they generally underperform in the classroom; and they have poor employment prospects as adults, not to mention that the diseases that they become susceptible to, including hypertension, diabetes 2. These are two ailments that used to be confined to adults. No longer.
Did you know that the Centers for Disease Control reported out that 40 percent of cancers are linked to obesity? 40 percent. Studies have shown that childhood obesity inevitably leads to adult obesity. Sadly it appears that this generation of young people is likely to have a shorter lifespan for the first time than their parents.
Public health visionary Dr. Jonathan Fielding has said, and I paraphrase: “The results are in. Younger people are not working out. They are in danger. It’s a it’s a pathway to chronic disease and early death.” He said, shockingly, 19-year-olds get no more exercise than 60-year-olds. Now ladies and gentlemen, I’m 68. Sixty’s in my rearview mirror. Normally, I’d like to be compared to a 19-year-old, but not today.
And if this picture isn’t scary enough, the financial consequences are quite high. Johns Hopkins researchers submitted a report that basically said if you take all children between the ages of eight and eleven, put them on a program of regular exercise, 25 minutes, three times a week, which by the way is 20 percent of what is the recommended amount, the savings will be 62.3 billion dollars over the course of their lifetimes, whether it be in lost wages or in medical expenses.
So we’re looking at a massive health crisis. What’s the solution? Well clearly one solution is schools. Why is that? Well that’s where the children are. That’s where the purpose is to train and to educate. I call physical education class the low-hanging fruit on the fitness tree. Children deserve to be literate in physical fitness just like they do in English or math. They deserve to understand the roles that nutrition and fitness play.
And it’s not just confined to your bodies. It also has to do with cognitive achievement, mental and emotional health. And again, studies have shown that students who take physical education are more likely to be out, to be active outside of physical education class. That will set a firm foundation for fitness as they go into adulthood.
A special area of concern is low-income schools. Children’s Defense Fund study found that children in low-income neighborhoods are nine times more likely to be overweight. We know that in low-income neighborhoods there’s relatively few safe playspaces, few affordable healthy food options. Organized sports? Very expensive. So it may be realistically that physical education in lower-income neighborhoods is the only realistic chance for those students to get any exercise.
You know I think what strikes me most is that physical education class is the only class that benefits the body, the mind, and the spirit. This is not breaking news. This is ancient wisdom, all the way up to the present, that there is a fundamental connection between body, mind, and spirit. This is a timeless concept that’s being ignored today in the educational establishment.
Exercise teaches, exercise is good for your body, but it also teaches resilience and perseverance and a host of other character traits that are necessary for a life well lived. Physical education class is a practice field where these character traits can be honed and developed.
To have our children reach their highest potential, it’s the adults in the room that need to make the best decisions for them. In the United States, we enjoy one of the highest standards of living in the world. Surely there’s a way to provide this gift for our children.
It’s not a matter of resources, it’s a matter of priorities. We did it in the 1960s when our schools rallied around the call of President Kennedy for a fit nation. And we could do it again. President Kennedy said, “Fitness is a vital prerequisite for America’s fullest realization of its potential.” It was then, and it is today.
So let me leave you with a couple of thoughts. It’s well settled in law and in the constitutions of many states that education is a fundamental right. Shouldn’t physical education be a fundamental right? What if physical education was required in every school, in every grade, in every year, for every child? What if physical education was considered the most important subject in school?
If we really care about our children and their future, shouldn’t we do more? I know what our son Willie would say. Thank you.
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The Importance of Physical Education in Schools
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Studying Process , Healthy Living
Physical Education , Physical Exercise
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Introduction, benefits of physical education, challenges and solutions, fostering lifelong healthy habits, integration with overall education.
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Physical Education and Its Importance to Physical Activity, Vegetable Consumption and Thriving in High School Students in Norway
Data supporting reported results can be found on the following link: https://teams.microsoft.com/_#/school/files/General?threadId=19%3A00faa60f3ab64020b836a1c964c56962%40thread.skype&ctx=channel&context=PYD%2520Database&rootfolder=%252Fsites%252FTEAM_PYDCrossNational_Project%252FShared%2520Documents%252FGeneral%252FPYD%2520Database (accessed on 18 August 2021).
Earlier research indicates that physical education (PE) in school is associated with positive outcomes (e.g., healthy lifestyle, psychological well-being, and academic performance). Research assessing associations with resilience and thriving indicators, such as the 5Cs of Positive Youth Development (PYD; competence , confidence , character , caring , and connection ) is limited and more so in the Norwegian context. The aim of the present study was to investigate associations between PE grade (reflecting students’ effort in theoretical and practical aspects of the subject) and the 5Cs as well as healthy behaviors (physical activity (PA), fruit and vegetable consumption), using cross-sectional data collected from 220 high school students in Norway ( M age = 17.30 years old, SD = 1.12; 52% males). Results from structural equation modelling indicated positive associations between PE grade and four of the 5Cs ( competence , confidence , caring , and connection ; standardized coefficient: 0.22–0.60, p < 0.05) while in logistic regressions, a unit increase in PE grade was associated with higher likelihood of engaging in PA and vegetable consumption (OR = 1.94; 95% CI = 1.18–3.18 and OR = 1.68; 95% CI = 1.08–2.63, respectively). These significant findings suggest the need for policies and programs that can support effective planning and implementation of PE curriculum. However, further research is needed to probe into the role of PE on youth health and development with representative samples and longitudinal designs.
The positive and protective effects of physical activity (PA), such as enhanced physical health, psychological well-being, increased concentration, academic performance, and reduced feelings of depression and anxiety, have been well documented in earlier studies [ 1 , 2 , 3 ]. Physical education (PE) is taught as a subject in many countries around the world, but it also incorporates aspects of PA within the school context, because of the different indoor and outdoor activities students engage in during PE sessions. Indeed, Mooses and colleagues [ 4 ] found PE to significantly increase daily moderate to vigorous PA alongside reducing sedentary time among schoolchildren. In addition, Tassitano and colleagues [ 5 ] observed a positive association between enrollment in PE sessions and several health-related behaviors including physical activity and fruit consumption.
In many schools, students’ efforts in PE are captured in the grade they receive on the subject. Thus, higher grades in PE would indicate greater efforts and achievement in the physical activities engaged in, which in turn can lead to the promotion of outcomes related to health and development as indicated in earlier studies [ 1 , 2 , 3 ]. The present study seeks to determine whether this is the case in high school students in Norway.
1.1. Physical Education in the Global and Norwegian Contexts
In basic terms, physical education has been described as “education through the physical”. Consistent with United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, PE embraces terms, such as “physical culture”, “movement”, “human motricity”, and “school sport”, and refers to a structured period of directed physical activity in school contexts [ 6 ]. A PE curriculum usually features activities such as team and individual games and sports, gymnastics, dance, swimming, outdoor adventure, and track and field athletics [ 6 ]. By engaging in a variety of physical activities, students are taught physical, social, mental, and emotional skills to empower them to live an active and healthy lifestyle. PE is also an arena where students can develop and practice skills related to collaboration, communication, creativity, and critical thinking [ 7 ].
In a world-wide survey of physical education that involved 232 countries (and autonomous regions), 97% of the countries were found to have either legal requirements for PE within their general education systems or PE was a general practice at some ages of the schoolchildren or phases of compulsory schooling [ 6 ]. The number of PE lessons that were taught in schools across the countries varied from 0.5 to 6.0 per week and from 16 to 46 weeks per year during compulsory education. Country variation depended greatly on the mindset held about the importance and relevance of the subject in the school curricula.
A European Commission report on physical education and sport at school in Europe indicates that while about 50% of the educational systems have national strategies to support the development of PE and PA, two-thirds have large-scale schemes assigned to these activities [ 8 ]. With activities that include athletics, dance, health and fitness, gymnastics, games, outdoor and adventure, swimming, winter sports, and others, the goals of European countries have been to promote the development of pupils and students in the physical, personal, and social domains [ 8 ].
As in many European countries, PE is one of several subjects taught to pupils and students in compulsory education in Norway (i.e., 6–16-year-olds in primary and lower secondary education). The PE curriculum has both practical and theoretical components. In both components of the curriculum, students are introduced to organized physical activities and spontaneous play in varied environments, in a wide range of sports, dance and other movement activities, and in outdoor life, which allows them to orient and spend time in nature in different seasons as well as being an aspect of exercise and lifestyle that deals with the effect of physical activity on health. In high schools, students receive a total of 168 h of PE lessons during their 3-year education, where in addition to sports activities, outdoor life, and lessons on exercise and lifestyle, they receive education in physical motor activities that go beyond traditional sports activities. Moreover, students at this level of education have the possibility to combine PE with active participation in competitive sports [ 9 ].
PE lessons in Norway focus on providing students with challenges and courage to enable them to stretch their own boundaries, in both spontaneous and organized activities. In addition, it is anticipated that students will experience joy, mastery and inspiration by participating in a variety of physical activities, which will eventually help them to develop self-esteem, self-understanding, positive perception of the body and positive identity. Furthermore, the social aspects of the physical activities are intended to create an arena where students can exercise fair play and respect for each other [ 9 , 10 ]. All these effects are positive outcomes that tend to signify several components of what has been referred to as the 5Cs of PYD ( competence , confidence , character , caring, and connection ) [ 11 ] and the ability to develop healthy behaviors, thus supporting health as defined by the World Health Organization. In 1948, the World Health Organization [ 12 ] defined health as “a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity” (p. 100). PE’s role in facilitating health and development will thus touch on WHO’s three dimensions of health.
The current focus of the Norwegian PE curriculum is a result of changes made to the curriculum in 2012, due among others to students and teachers’ dissatisfaction with the stress emanating from the expectations attached to sports achievements and physical performance abilities as well as the observation and measurement the teachers had to undertake to grade students’ abilities. With the present curriculum, it is the effort made by students (i.e., the attempts made to use the acquired knowledge and capabilities to reach developmental goals and not necessarily the attained progress) that is considered as relevant [ 13 ]. Thus, a high grade in PE subject will not only indicate a form of academic achievement, but it will also signify students’ efforts and experience in a variety of physical activities and their knowledge on how these activities can promote positive developmental outcomes, such as health, self-development, and identity [ 14 ].
1.2. Positive Youth Development and the 5Cs
Positive Youth Development is a line of research and a developmental framework that focuses on the identification and promotion of youth strengths [ 15 , 16 ], and the equipping of youth toward becoming productive members of their society [ 16 ]. PYD suggests that all young people have strengths and as such are potential resources to their own development and that of the society they are a part of. In addition, PYD proposes that all youth contexts, such as home, school and the local community, have human and material resources that youth can have access to in their interactions with significant others in these contexts [ 17 ]. In PE sessions, these contextual resources will be the support from peers and teachers, the opportunities created for students to develop resilience, competences and mastery, the boundaries students will have to respect as well as the expectations to be met. Youth strengths will be the personal interest, skills, and abilities that students bring to the PE sessions.
Within PYD, the 5Cs are viewed as a product of the alignment between youth strengths and contextual resources [ 15 ]. Accordingly, the dynamic interaction that ensues between an active, engaged, and competent person and their receptive, supportive, and nurturing ecologies in the context of varying degrees of risk and adversity will lead to a process referred to as adaptive developmental regulations [ 11 , 15 , 18 ], where youth can be resilient, thrive and develop to their full potential. Thriving means youth are scoring high on the 5Cs. The 5Cs include competence (which reflects the positive views of an individual’s action in domains, such as academic, social, cognitive and vocational); confidence (which relates to the individual’s sense of mastery and purpose for the future, a positive identity and self-efficacy); character (which denotes one’s integrity, moral commitment, and respect for societal and cultural rules); caring (which indicates one’s sense of empathy and sympathy for others); and connection (which reflects the bidirectional exchanges and healthy relations between the individual and friends, family, school, and community). Within the PYD framework, the 5Cs typically reflect thriving and positive development, but also resilience (in contexts where there are high levels of risk and adversity) among young people [ 15 , 18 ]. PYD proposes that youth who are thriving are put on a life trajectory towards an “idealized adulthood” [ 19 ]. In addition, youth who are resilient and thriving are more likely to contribute to their own development as well as to the development of their society [ 15 ].
1.3. Earlier Research on Positive Youth Development, Healthy Behaviors and Physical Education
Research on the relationship between grade in PE (which reflects students’ participation in PE sessions) and the 5Cs of PYD is limited, although earlier studies have recounted several positive outcomes of PE in schools. In one study that investigated PYD-related outcomes in the contexts of PE, Holt et al. [ 20 ] found in a qualitative study of 8 teachers and 59 children at an inner-city school in Canada that PE activities engaged in tended to promote developmental outcomes, such as empathy and healthy relationships between students. In addition, PE activities became an arena where teachers considered students’ input to the PE activities and created boundaries and procedures for expected behaviors.
Furthermore, Bailey [ 1 ], in a review article, summarized several positive and profound benefits of PE that included physical health, healthy lifestyle, psychological well-being, social skills and improved academic performance. These benefits were more probable in contexts where there were positive experiences of the PE activities, enjoyment, efforts made to engage all students as well as when teachers and coaches were committed and were equipped with the necessary skills. In another literature review on the impact of PE and sport on educational outcomes, Stead and Nevill [ 21 ] found that increased physical education, physical activity or sport tended to maintain or enhance academic achievement. The authors also found a positive association between physical activity and aspects of mental health, such as self-esteem, emotive well-being, spirituality, and future expectations. Moreover, Stead and Nevill [ 21 ] observed that the implementation of extra organized physical activity, as little as 10 min into the school day, tended to improve classroom behavior. These earlier studies support the important role of PE on health (including the physical, mental, and social dimensions) and positive development in youth.
As for healthy behaviors and their associations with PE, Mayorga-Vega and colleagues [ 22 ] conducted a study among 158 students in a Spanish high school and found that students had greater physical activity levels and lower levels of sedentary behaviors during PE days compared to non-PE days and weekends. In a much larger sample of 4210 high school students in Brazil, Tassitano et al.’s [ 5 ] assessment of the role of PE enrollment on several health behaviors revealed, among others, positive associations of enrollment in PE classes with physical activity and fruit consumption, as well as a negative association with drinking of sugar-sweetened beverages. In a longitudinal study of Canadian adolescents, Wiseman and Weir [ 23 ] investigated PE rating among other subjects alongside the importance of PE for PA levels and several health variables over a two-year period. Their results indicated that most of the participants (78%) preferred PE over other subjects, and that preferring PE was associated with higher PA levels, lower BMI, and higher self-esteem. Thus, while earlier research supports the predictive role of PE on youth development and healthy behaviors, the evidence regarding the importance of PE to the 5Cs of PYD is unclear because of limited research.
1.4. Aims of the Present Study
Research on the 5Cs of PYD has usually involved American youth [ 11 , 24 ] although research featuring non-American samples is growing [ 25 , 26 ]. Moreover, while the effects of PE on youth health and development have been widely studied, a literature search did not return any study that had assessed the relation between PE and the 5Cs in the Norwegian context. Several studies have hinted how activities engaged in during PE can be used to foster positive development. For example, Mandigo et al. [ 27 ] described how quality PE activities can be used to promote positive development and peace education among schoolchildren in a developing country. More specifically, the authors outlined various behaviors in the physical, intellectual, psychological, and social domains that physical educators can instill in schoolchildren to foster the 5Cs of PYD and peaceful interactions. Holt and colleagues [ 20 ] also described how strategies, such as setting of clear boundaries and allowing inputs from schoolchildren, and the teacher being a PE specialist, could facilitate positive youth development. Thus, in line with these earlier PYD studies, PE can be an arena where youth development as well as health (as proposed by WHO) are promoted.
In the present study, the aim is to examine the link between grade in PE and positive outcomes reflected in the 5Cs of PYD. A second aim is to study the association between PE grade and healthy behaviors, such as PA during leisure time and the consumption of fruit and vegetables. With the goal of the Norwegian PE curriculum to promote health, self-development and identity among others, grade in PE reflecting attained knowledge, participation and efforts invested in various physical activities should be associated with the 5Cs. Thus, as a hypothesis, students with higher PE grades are also expected to report higher scores on the 5Cs. Like the 5Cs, positive associations are hypothesized between PE grade and healthy behaviors. If positive associations are found between PE, the 5Cs and healthy behaviors, PE can be considered as an avenue to instill competencies that can have implications for students’ health, thriving, and resilience. Earlier studies suggest that boys engage in PA more often than girls, and PA tends to decrease with age [ 28 ]. Parents’ educational level has also been found to be positively related to the 5Cs [ 26 ]. Hence, gender, age, and parents’ education were accounted for in the assessment of the influence of PE grade on the 5Cs and healthy behaviors.
2. Materials and Methods
The current study forms part of a larger international project on positive development among youth and emerging adults, where the general goal is to assess how youth strengths and contextual resources align to foster thriving and youth contribution to societal development [ 29 ]. For the present study, cross-sectional data were collected from 220 students in four high schools located in Eastern and Western Norway. About 52% of the participants were boys and the age range was between 16 and 20 years ( M = 17.30, SD = 1.12). Almost 83% reported that the highest level of education of their father was postsecondary, while 87% did the same for their mother’s education.
2.2.1. physical education grade.
Participants self-reported their current academic grade (1 to 6) on physical education. A grade of 1 represents minimum knowledge and effort invested during PE sessions while a grade of 6 represents great knowledge and maximum invested effort in PE sessions.
2.2.2. The 5Cs of PYD
To assess the 5Cs, Geldhof and colleagues’ [ 11 ] short version of the PYD questionnaire, consisting of 34 items, was used. Samples of the items used in measuring the 5Cs include: “I am just as smart as others my age” ( competence , 6 items); “I really like the way I look” ( confidence , 6 items); “I usually act the way I am supposed to” ( character , 8 items); “When I see someone being exploited I want to help them” ( caring , 6 items); and “I am a helpful and important family member” ( connection , 8 items). Responses were measured on a 5-point Likert scale, ranging from 1 (Strongly Disagree) to 5 (Strongly Agree), for example, where a higher score indicated a higher experience of the C-item in question. The psychometric properties of the 5Cs scale have been mostly assessed in U.S. samples [ 11 , 24 ] but also in some non-U.S. samples [ 25 , 26 ].
2.2.3. Healthy Behaviors
Items measuring healthy behaviors (physical activity, fruit and vegetable consumption) were adopted from the Search Institute’s [ 30 ] survey on attitudes and behaviors. Participants indicated 0 (No) or 1 (Yes) to the following items: “I engage in physical activity (for at least 30 min) twice or more per week”, “I eat at least one serving of fruit every day” and “I eat at least one serving of vegetables every day”. Spearman correlation among the three healthy behaviors ranged from 0.25 to 0.37.
2.2.4. Demographic Variables
Data were also collected on gender (boy or girl), age and mother and father’s educational level (five levels of education: 1 (no education), 2 (primary school), 3 (high school), 4 (technical or vocational school), and 5 (university)). The demographics were treated as control variables in the data analysis.
Data collection took place in May–August 2019. Convenience sampling was used to select four schools located in the Eastern and Western parts of Norway. The heads of the conveniently selected schools were contacted via e-mail, with a request to participate in the study and an information letter about the purpose of the study. After agreeing to participate, the heads of schools were sent informed consent forms, developed in accordance with the NSD (Norwegian Centre for Research Data) guidelines, which they were asked to sign and send back. Once that was done, teachers from the four schools who agreed to conduct the survey with their students were sent the questionnaire via email. Informed consent was sought from students prior to the data collection, which took place during school hours over the schools’ internal web system. NSD (Norwegian Centre for Research Data) approved the study (51708/3/IJJ), while Semantix Translations Norway AS, Oslo, Norway, a company that specializes in interpretation services, translated the questionnaire from English to Norwegian using double-checking methods and translation experts in the relevant field of research to ensure preservation of meaning.
2.4. Data Analysis
G*Power 3 [ 31 ] was used to conduct a power analysis to determine the sample size that will allow for the assessment of meaningful associations and the detection of effect sizes (small, medium, or large). Using a two-tailed test with the 5 independent variables (PE grade and the four demographic variables (gender, age, father’s education and mother’s education)), and an alpha value of 0.05, the results indicated that with a power of 0.80, sample sizes of 395, 55, and 25 were needed to detect effect sizes of 0.02 (small), 0.15 (medium), and 0.35 (large), respectively. Reaching the study’s sample size of 220 meant that medium to large effect sizes can be detected in the statistical analyses.
Descriptive and correlation analyses were performed using IBM SPSS Statistics for Windows, version 25, while all other analyses were carried out using Mplus version 8 [ 32 ]. Most participants (80%) were missing only 3 cases or less, while 59% had full data. The analyses in Mplus were conducted with the Maximum likelihood estimation, an estimation method used to handle missing cases. The method works by estimating a likelihood function for each case based on the variables present in the dataset such that all the available data are used.
Descriptive analyses were conducted to assess the pattern of study variables: the demographics, PE grade, the 5Cs of PYD and the three healthy behaviors. Confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) was performed on the items measuring the 5Cs to verify the factorial structure of the scale. Chi-square tests and indices, such as the Tucker Lewis Index (TLI; acceptable above 0.90), the Root Mean Square Error of Approximation (RMSEA; acceptable below 0.08), and Comparative Fit Index (CFI; acceptable above 0.90) [ 33 , 34 ]) were used to evaluate model fit. To test the hypothesis that higher scores in PE will be associated with higher scores in the 5Cs, structural equation modelling (SEM) analysis was carried out. In preliminary analyses, the linearity and normal distribution of the 5Cs as dependent variables were determined, with skewness and kurtosis falling within the acceptable range of −2 to +2 and −7 to +7, respectively for SEM analysis [ 35 ]. Finally, the hypothesis that higher scores in PE will be associated with higher odds of the healthy behaviors was tested using logistic regressions due to the binary response categories of the healthy behavior variables. In both SEM and logistic regression, the demographic variables: gender, age, and father’s and mother’s educational background were controlled for.
3.1. Descriptive Analysis
In Table 1 , a frequency analysis of PE grade showed that about 96% of the participants reported grades between 4 and 6. In the Norwegian high school system, a grade of 1 is the lowest, while 6 is the highest a student can earn in a subject. For the 5Cs of PYD, high Cronbach’s alphas, indicating high internal consistencies (ranging from 0.85–0.93) were estimated for all the Cs. The frequency distribution of the three healthy behaviors revealed that most of the participants (about 82%) engaged in PA for at least 30 min twice or more per week, while 57% and 70% consumed at least one serving of fruit and vegetable per day, respectively ( Table 1 ).
Descriptive statistics and reliability coefficients for study variables among Norwegian youth.
Furthermore, descriptive analysis of the 5Cs showed that the highest mean score was registered for caring ( M = 4.29, SD = 0.78), followed by character and then connection . Competence had the lowest mean score ( M = 3.65, SD = 0.86). Thus, on average, participants’ responses on the 5Cs suggested moderate to relatively high levels of the PYD outcomes. The statistically significant correlations between PE grade and the 5Cs (mean scores) were weak to moderate, ranging from 0.17 to 0.55. In addition, the correlation between PE grade and the healthy behaviors were weak but statistically significant (0.19–0.25). Finally, several significant but weak correlations were observed between the 5Cs and the healthy behavior variables as well as between the demographic variables, the 5Cs and the healthy behavior variables ( Table 2 ).
Correlation analyses of demographic variables, physical education grade, the 5Cs of PYD, and healthy behaviors.
Note. * p < 0.05; ** p < 0.01.
3.2. CFA of the 5Cs of PYD and Structural Equation Modelling of PE Grade and the 5Cs
Prior to the assessment of the associations between PE grade and the 5Cs, confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) was conducted on the 34 items of the 5Cs to determine the factorial structure of the scale. An initial CFA of the items, where 14 pairs of same-facet items (in competence , confidence , character and connection ) were allowed to correlate, yielded a poor model fit: χ 2 (500, N = 194) = 998.075, p < 0.001, RMSEA = 0.072, CFI = 0.872, TFI = 0.857. An examination of the modification indices revealed cross-loadings of four items, two items regarding social competence for competence , one item on social conscience for character and another on caring . In addition, the modification indices indicated correlations among one pair of same-construct items (i.e., confidence ) and two pairs of different-construct items, one between competence and connection , and the other between confidence and character . After eliminating cross-loading items and including the correlations, an adequate model fit was attained in a second CFA: χ 2 (378, N = 194) = 646.879, p < 0.001, RMSEA = 0.061, CFI = 0.917, TFI = 0.905. The factor loadings for all 5Cs in this new CFA were adequate, ranging from 0.54 to 0.91. Correlations among the latent factors of the 5Cs were between 0.32 and 0.88.
In Table 3 , having controlled for demographic factors (i.e., gender, age, and parents’ educational background), findings from the structural equation modelling revealed significant associations between PE grade and all the 5Cs of PYD except for character . Not surprisingly, the strongest association was between PE grade and competence (standardized coefficient of 0.60), both largely reflecting students’ competence. The standardized coefficients for confidence and connection were 0.36, and 0.37, respectively, while for caring the coefficient was 0.22. Thus, higher scores in PE were significantly associated with higher scores in the 5Cs besides character . As for the demographic variables, only gender was significantly related to caring in the SEM analysis (standardized coefficient of 0.36), where girls scored higher than boys.
Structural equation model of physical education grade and the 5Cs of PYD.
Note. PE—Physical education; a Controlled for gender, age, father’s education and mother’s education; * Standardized coefficient. Italics and bold show significant levels less than 0.05.
3.3. Logistic Regression Analyses of Physical Education and Healthy Behaviors
For the associations between PE grade and healthy behaviors, logistic regression models were analyzed because of the binary response categories of the behaviors ( Table 4 ). After controlling for the demographic variables, a unit increase in PE grade was associated with a 94% higher likelihood of engaging in PA (OR = 1.94; 95% CI = 1.18–3.18), and a 68% higher likelihood of vegetable consumption (OR = 1.68; 95% CI = 1.08–2.63), that is, when all other variables in the models were held at a constant. Thus, PE grade was significantly related to higher odds of PA and vegetable consumption, while the association with fruit consumption was not significant. None of the demographic variables were significantly related to the healthy behavior variables in the logistic regression analyses.
Associations between physical education (PE) and healthy behaviours: logistic regression analysis.
Note. PE—Physical education; B—Unstandardized coefficient; S.E.—Standard Error; Sig—Significance level; OR—Odds Ratio; CI—Confidence Interval.
The aim of the present study was to investigate the associations of PE grade with the 5Cs of PYD and healthy behaviors. As hypothesized, positive associations were observed between PE grade and four of the 5Cs ( competence , confidence , caring , and connection ) after adjusting for gender, age, and father’s and mother’s educational background. In contrast, although there was an indication that character was associated with PE grade, this association was not statistically significant in the SEM analysis. For the associations between PE grade and healthy behaviors, while logistic regression analyses showed higher odds of engagement in PA and vegetable consumption with every unit increase in PE grade, no such association was found for fruit consumption. Thus, the hypotheses were confirmed, although not for the association of PE grade with character and fruit consumption. That PE was found to be largely associated with the 5Cs and healthy behaviors is consistent with earlier findings that have supported the significant role of PE sessions on positive outcomes reflecting WHO’s different dimensions of health (physical, mental, and social) [ 1 , 21 ].
The current finding that PE grade was strongly related to competence was no surprise, as both connote a form of academic competence. In the present study, competence as one of the 5Cs was measured as competence in the academic and physical domains. Thus, PE grade was not only related to academic competence or cognitive abilities, but also to physical competence in sports and athletic activities. Earlier research among German students that supports the current findings reported a positive association between PE and cognitive skills measured by grades in German and mathematics [ 36 ], while findings of a review article also indicated that increasing the amount of time dedicated to PE and sports was in many instances associated with academic performance [ 1 ]. The goal of the Norwegian PE curriculum to enable students to develop mastery in the skills needed to undertake a variety of physical activities [ 9 ] can therefore be important not just for the grade in PE but for the general academic competence of students as well.
In addition to being associated with competence , PE grade was associated with confidence , caring and connection. Accordingly, students who scored high in PE were also more likely to report indicators of thriving and positive development, associations that have been confirmed in a related study on the link between participation in sport camps and the 5Cs of PYD that were captured as two factors (pro-social values and confidence/competence) [ 37 ]. Moreover, Bailey [ 1 ] in a review, reported on how PE and sports in schools can provide a favorable environment for social development, a finding that largely corroborates the current results on the significant link between PE and connection (signifying healthy social relations at home, school, and local community). Indeed, an important aim of the Norwegian PE curriculum among others is to create a social arena for fair play and respect between students [ 9 , 10 ]. However, character (reflecting the integrity and moral compass of youth) was the only thriving indicator that was not associated with PE grade, neither in zero-order correlation nor in multivariate analysis. It is possible that the alignment between youth strengths and contextual resources that facilitate the 5Cs of PYD in PE sessions predicts some of the Cs better than others. This assertion will need to be probed into in future research.
Furthermore, PE grade was related to healthy behaviors, such as PA and vegetable consumption, but not fruit consumption. Earlier research among students attending a Spanish high school associated participation in PE with greater PA levels and lower levels of sedentary behaviors during PE days compared to non-PE days and weekends [ 22 ]. Enrollment in PE activities among high school students in Brazil has been found to be positively related to healthy behaviors, such as PA and fruit consumption, as well as negatively related to drinking of sugar-sweetened beverages [ 5 ]. Wiseman and Weir [ 23 ] also found among Canadian high school students that preferring PE over other school subjects was associated with higher PA levels, lower BMI, and higher self-esteem. Although it was PE grade that was assessed in the current study, the grade reflects students’ participation in both theoretical and practical components of the Norwegian PE sessions. Thus, the current finding on the positive association between PE grade and healthy behaviors is largely in line with earlier findings. In summary, PE sessions reflected in the grade of students were associated with positive youth developmental outcomes, such as thriving (the 5Cs) and healthy behaviors, outcomes that tend to reflect all three dimensions of health (physical, mental, and social) as defined by the World Health Organization.
In SEM and logistic regression, the demographics did not appear to play an important role on the 5Cs and healthy behaviors, as a significant association was only observed between gender and caring , with girls reporting higher scores than boys. This finding is in line with earlier research that found similar associations in upper secondary and university students in Spain [ 38 ] and is often attributed to gender socialization, where boys are taught to be tough and girls caring. In future studies, the role of gender and other demographics are worth investigating to ascertain their effects and place in intervention programs.
The present study has some limitations that need to be considered in the interpretation of the findings. First, the relationships between PE grade and the positive youth developmental outcomes may not indicate causation due to the cross-sectional design of the current study. While the present and earlier findings suggest a positive influence of PE on youth development and healthy behaviors, it is also possible that high levels of the thriving indicators ( competence , confidence , caring and connection ) led to more effort in PE sessions, and consequently, high grade in the subject. In addition, it is likely that students who participate in healthy behaviors such as PA and vegetable consumption will also perform better in PE sessions. Looking at these relationships within a longitudinal design will shed more light on both the developmental trajectories and relations between PE participation and positive youth outcomes.
Second, while there is no reason to believe that youth will be deceptive in the report of their grade and competencies, it is still likely that their self-report responses were affected by social desirability bias, where they tended to over-report their PE grades, for example. In future studies, students’ actual grades provided by teachers can be one method to address the limitation associated with self-report responses and the associated social desirability bias. Third, the binary response categories (Yes/No) of the healthy behaviors did not allow much variation among the behaviors to be assessed. Moreover, although the measures represented general assessment of PA and fruit and vegetable consumption, they did not adequately reflect the global recommendations of the healthy behaviors. This is a limitation that can be addressed in future studies with better instruments that allow for more variations as well as assessment of the recommended amounts and levels of the healthy behaviors. Fourth, the items measuring the 5Cs of PYD were created with US samples, and although the scale was largely validated with the Norwegian sample, there were some items that cross-loaded onto different factors. In addition, relatively high correlations were found among some of the measures, for example between competence and confidence . Thus, it is possible that some items of the 5Cs did not adequately capture or make a distinction between the thriving indicators in Norwegian students. These shortcomings can be a topic of investigation in future studies using qualitative methods.
Finally, although the power analysis indicated that the sample size of 220 was enough to detect medium to large effect sizes in the relationships being studied, a larger sample could provide more robust findings. Besides, the participating schools and thus the students involved in the current study were selected through convenience sampling, thus limiting the extent to which the present findings can be generalized to the whole youth population in Norway. Future studies that use a more representative and inclusive sample reflecting youth from different geographic locations, diverse ethnicities and other backgrounds will be more effective in generating findings that are representative of the Norwegian youth population.
4.2. Implications for Research, Policy, and Practice
Despite the limitations, the current study has implications for research, policy, and practice. In terms of research, the validation of the 5Cs of PYD scale among high school students in Norway adds to the limited research of the 5Cs in Norway and paves the way for further research of the thriving indicators among youth in the Norwegian and other similar Scandinavian and European contexts. Additional research on the 5Cs can also eventually lead to a more refined scale that includes items unique to the Norwegian, Scandinavian or European context. In addition, future studies on PE and the 5Cs can assess the level of risk and adversity in the contexts in which youth are interacting. This will enable the assessment of not only thriving, but resilience as well.
As for policy, the fact that PE grade is related to thriving and healthy behaviors suggests that the Norwegian PE curriculum is important to the promotion of the positive development of the youth, and, possibly, resilience. These results should make the effective implementation of PE curriculum in all schools a priority on the Norwegian political agenda at both the national and community or school level. This way, young people across gender, socio-economic statuses, ethnicities, and other backgrounds can be reached and empowered with the necessary physical, cognitive, and psychosocial skills and competences that are associated with the array of activities taught in PE sessions. Moreover, the current findings of the significant role of PE can inform strategies used in PE curricula in other Scandinavian and European countries. In line with a European Commission report [ 8 ], although all European countries acknowledge the importance of PE at school, only two-thirds of the educational systems had large-scale national initiatives to support the promotion of PE and PA. Indeed, as implied in the current findings, the goal of European countries to facilitate the physical, personal and social development of pupils and students can only be realized when PE curricula are planned and implemented effectively.
There are some practical implications of the current findings as well. With the significant associations between PE grade, the 5Cs of PYD (indicating thriving indicators), and healthy behaviors, it is important that during PE sessions, efforts are made to engage all students in activities that can create positive experiences, enjoyment and mastery as outlined in the PE curriculum. In the curriculum, there is also a focus to provide students with challenges that can enable them to participate actively in both spontaneous and organized activities as well as arenas where students can exercise fair play and respect for each other. Efforts made to implement all these aims in the PE sessions will not only produce healthy, thriving, and resilient youth but, as proposed by PYD, the efforts would also mean a healthy transition into adulthood for the youth.
Positive effects of PE participation have been well documented in earlier studies. The current study adds to these benefits with findings that suggest that PE grade reflecting participation in PE is significantly related to thriving indicators, such as competence , confidence , caring and connection (4 out of the 5Cs of PYD), as well as healthy behaviors such as PA and vegetable consumption. These findings support the importance of PE sessions to the healthy development of youth and suggest that policies and programs at the national and local levels that ensure the effective implementation of a PE curriculum in school would be promoting developmental outcomes that align with the dimensions of health outlined by the World Health Organization. However, more research needs to be carried out with adequate measurement of healthy behaviors and representative samples to ascertain the facilitating role of PE sessions on youth health, thriving, and positive development, but also resilience in risk and adverse contexts of youth, as this can secure a life trajectory towards an idealized adulthood for all youth.
I would like to acknowledge Maria Bøhlerengen for coordinating the data collection and the youth participants for their engagement in the present study.
This research received no external funding.
Institutional Review Board Statement
The study was conducted according to the guidelines of the Declaration of Helsinki and approved by the Institutional Review Board (or Ethics Committee) of NSD—Norwegian Centre for Research Data, Norway (protocol code 51708/3/IJJ and 18 July 2017).
Informed Consent Statement
Informed consent was obtained from all subjects involved in the study.
Data Availability Statement
Conflicts of interest.
The author declares no conflict of interest.
Publisher’s Note: MDPI stays neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims in published maps and institutional affiliations.
10 Reasons Why Physical Education is Important
This article will give you in-depth information about the importance of physical education in schools.
Physical education is important because it enhances the overall quality of life, promotes health and well-being, fosters friendships and teamwork skills, and develops lifelong healthy habits.
Since time immemorial, physical education has played a crucial role in the lives of human beings. Exercise and physical activity have been proven to have many benefits for both the body and the mind.
Physical education aims to empower students to make wise use of their energy, effort, and time by studying in a fruitful way. The ultimate purpose of physical education is not just to train a student’s body but also to train his/her mind.
What is Physical Education?
Physical education (P.E), also known as gym classes, is an activity used to enhance fitness and agility through exercise and physical activity. Some define it as an educational approach that encourages individuals to develop a physically active lifestyle, to enhance their health and well-being.
Physical education is taught within the school curriculum (in most countries) and/or in preschools, colleges and universities, military institutions, and sports clubs.
The role of physical education goes beyond exercise. Indeed, developing skills, attitudes, and cooperation are key elements in this program.
The following are the importance of physical education.
1. Assist Students In Reaching Their Physical Potential In a Variety of Sporting Environments
Physical education assists students in reaching their physical potential by supporting training within a variety of sporting environments. Benefits include improved kinesthetic learning and socialization with peers, teachers, and coaches.
This important course is made even more enjoyable when good teachers are at hand to not only educate but inspire others to reach their full potential in a variety of sporting environments.
Physical education also prepares the body for participation in a wide range of sports, recreational activities, and other endeavors. It is an excellent example of a core curriculum in school systems.
2. Provides Opportunities for Kids To Take Responsibility for Their Health
Physical education is important for kids to play and stay healthy throughout their lives. It can provide opportunities for kids to take responsibility for their health . Kids learn about food choices, exercise, diet and nutrition, and personal fitness through physical education.
A number of studies have shown that children who are physically fit are less likely to suffer from health problems and tend to live much longer than their less active counterparts. With regular physical activity, the overall health of a child can be dramatically improved.
3. Serves as an Outlet for Stress
Physical education is important because it offers students/children an outlet for stress due to all of the academic pressures. When kids participate in physical education and sports, they learn to be part of a team, how to persevere when they fail, and they learn the value of cooperation.
Having to perform physical activity can reduce the stress in a person’s body. For example, many types of exercise will produce endorphins in the body. The feeling of the body releasing its hormones will make the person feel happy and relaxed.
4. Improves Mental Health
There is long-standing research showing that physical activity improves mental health and well-being. The importance of physical education courses to a student’s overall well-being cannot be overstated.
With these kinds of classes, teachers are able to establish the proper balance between physical and mental training for the students in their care. A physically active lifestyle actively contributes to the health and well-being of a person.
Physical education encourages a healthy diet, which reduces fatigue and stress throughout the day, as well as helps reduce body fat. It also eliminates the problems of obesity and poor eating habits that add stress to the body and mind instead of alleviating it.
Children who participate in sports have higher levels of self-esteem and are less prone to develop learning disorders. They also have fewer health problems than their non-athletic peers. In addition, a child’s IQ increases when he participates in sports.
5. Improves Attention Span, Self-Esteem, and Body Image
One of the most important reasons for physical education is that it has been proven to improve a whole range of skills, from increasing attention span to improving self-esteem, and from enhancing body image to helping develop social skills.
Physical activity also has a positive effect on body image by building muscle tone and bone mass, allowing you to feel good about how you look. Getting an adequate amount of physical activity helps you sleep better at night and reduces anxiety.
In addition, regular physical activity improves your emotional well-being, which is an important aspect of physical education.
6. Nourishes Friendships – Peers and Teachers
Physical education nourishes social relationships. Students need to have positive social relationships with their teachers and peers to learn. In a classroom setting, it gives students the chance to bond with their classmates.
This is particularly helpful in middle school and high school. The teachers are often involved in extracurricular activities, such as leading the football team to victory or making sure everyone makes it to softball practice. These activities cultivate relationships between teachers and students.
7. Builds Self-Confidence and Self-Reliance
P.E classes are not just about theory, they are also an opportunity for children to get some exercise. Active physical activity can help boost a student’s confidence, as well as provide opportunities to learn how to make decisions on the field.
Furthermore, regardless of gender, age, race, or physical ability; those who participate in a well-rounded PE program will notice numerous benefits to their level of confidence and independence.
8. To Enhance Leadership Skills, Teamwork, and Sportsmanship
Physical education is important to help youths in becoming physically fit. It enhances one’s self-discipline, teamwork, leadership skills, and sportsmanship. For example, it can be seen in the difference between elite athletes and non-elite athletes.
This program helps students develop self-discipline through time management, planning for success, and stepping out of their comfort zones to learn new things they are uncomfortable with. It also encourages them to develop a good sense of self-esteem, and it teaches them to be fair and accept criticism.
9. Physical Education Lessons Can Help You Get into College
Everybody knows that physical education lessons are great for developing your mind, body, and soul.
Did you know, however, that as well as developing fitness, PE lessons can also help you get into college and increase your chances of getting the grades you want?
Let’s face it, physical education isn’t at the top of everyone’s favorite subject list. However, if you’re a high school student trying to get into college, you might want to think about P.E lessons as your new best friend.
If you are on a sports team, these lessons can help you get into college. Through the physical education program, you can participate in one or more sports such as football, soccer, basketball, and volleyball.
There is a wide range of options for students to participate in trying different sports at their high school.
10. Sport Helps Children Develop Their Motor Skills and Strengthen Their Muscles
Physical education is something that teachers, students, and parents really should think about. It is one of the most important things in a child’s life.
Some people say that it is only to teach children how to play games or sports. But this is not true. P.E is used to do much more than teach children how to play sports.
Physical education helps kids develop their motor skills and strengthen their muscles. When children have a variety of experiences with basic physical activities, they are more likely to enjoy sports and movement as they get older. Poor motor development can lead to physical problems and difficulty with schoolwork later in life.
What Role Does the Teacher Play in Physical Education Classes?
In the present day, physical education is a subject that is taken very seriously by many educational institutions around the world.
In fact, it has now become one of the required subjects in public schools. It is an important component of a child’s education.
It provides important skills that children need to succeed and progress in many other areas of life. P.E can provide the foundation for learning and development.
As a teacher, your role is to ensure that you cover all of the necessary learning objectives. You should also maintain a balance between individual, group, and team activities throughout the unit.
Physical education teachers are professional educators devoted to teaching students the importance of a healthy body and mind. They teach students the basics of different sports and games, as well as how to enjoy being active.
Who needs physical education?
Everyone needs physical education. You may be a workaholic or a college student or possess the physique of a world-class athlete, but one thing is certain – you need physical education to be fit and healthy. Keeping fit can help you ward off serious diseases and improve your quality of life.
How can teachers and school administrators encourage students to participate in sports?
Schools and teachers can promote physical education by helping to reduce the cost of equipment and uniforms, offering time after school for sports, and organizing team activities during lunchtime.
Another way is to get everyone to participate. The more people are aware of the benefits of physical education, the more likely students will be to participate.
For example, schools can organize intramural teams, or arrange for sports games outside of school hours.
A well-designed PE program will give students the opportunity to participate in a variety of activities, improve their physical fitness and coordination, develop social skills, and learn lifelong sportsmanship.
How can you encourage your child to play sports for his or her health if you don’t know anything about sports?
A lot of parents who don’t play sports often have a hard time convincing their kids that they need to exercise. That’s because they don’t understand why their kids should be getting up off the couch and staying active.
You don’t have to be a sports expert to encourage your child’s love of sports. As the parent of an athlete, your role is very important—you can provide support and guidance.
Encourage your child by joining the fun, not just watching from the sidelines. Stay positive, supportive, and encouraging.
Is physical education for children alone?
No, physical education is not just for children alone. Today, adults also worry about their health and wellness. It is important for children to engage in physical activity daily.
The benefits are endless. Both the old and young will learn overall body control, enhance motor skills and coordination, and build strength.
Besides, it is actually more important for adults to have an activity that moves their body than to sit in front of computers all day. It is even more important if they are going to work out to get good work physical exercise that can potentially be life-saving.
Physical education has numerous impacts on our lives. It has a big role to play in ensuring that we are healthy, helping to prevent both mental and physical illness. It also has an important role to play in the development of our lifestyles and the way we feel about ourselves.
As a result of participating in physical education programs, students prepare themselves for a physically and mentally healthy life. They will also learn new skills and activities that will enrich their lives outside of school.
Education is important , but there is no denying the positive effects that physical fitness can have on the mind.
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Importance of physical education
Have you ever wondered, “What is the importance of physical education?” Why is it studied in schools? How can it make a difference in students’ lives? Well, here’s the answer. After reading this essay, you will get a clear idea of why physical education is important.
A child of any gender, age, ethnicity, or race should be physically active, not only mentally. Did you know that, according to the National Association of Sports and Physical Education, a student must at least spend a hundred and fifty minutes weekly in physical education? But why physical education is important? In this essay (speech), we’ll emphasize the importance of physical education.
1.) It maintains good physical health
An important element of a healthy lifestyle is physical fitness. Physical Education promotes physical activity, which develop students’ muscles, increase stamina, and even increases the immune system, keeping them happy, energized and in good health all the time.
2.) Cultivates Sportsmanship
Sportsmanship is not only for sports, but also for life. Playing individual, dual, or even team sports will develop a sound sportsmanship. One of the main objectives of physical education is to cultivate the students’ ideas of fairness, respect, ethics, and fellowship with the competitor. Good sportsmanship not only makes champions in sports, but also champions in life.
3.) Boosts self confidence
Another benefit of physical education is that it develops student’s confidence, especially when one is engaging with sports. When students are victorious on a field game, the victory gives them a boost in confidence. Engaging in competition and performing skills cultivates self confidence, and self confidence is a very important element in developing a youth’s character and personality.
4.) Promotes a healthy lifestyle later in life
Studies show that people who have engaged in physical activities as youngsters are more likely to lead a healthier lifestyle later in their life as adults. Children who learn about health early in their age carries the knowledge as they grow older, hence they become adults who are aware of their physical condition and health.
5.) A sound mind, a sound body
Research proves that physical fitness activities promote neuron activity, which is much needed for cognitive activities. Also, physical activities encourage oxygen and blood circulation to the brains. A well rounded physical education class can also help thinking in academic classes, and this is why P.E. is much needed in the curriculum.
As we can see, physical education is really essential for the students. They get to know about the importance of staying healthy. Do share your opinion and thoughts on this topic in the comment section below.
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Home — Essay Samples — Education — Physical Education — The Importance of Physical Education to Maintain a Healthy and Happy Life
The Importance of Physical Education to Maintain a Healthy and Happy Life
- Categories: Physical Education
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Words: 441 |
Published: Aug 10, 2018
Words: 441 | Page: 1 | 3 min read
- Anderson, K. (2019). The Role of Physical Education in Promoting Holistic Health: A Review of Literature. Journal of Physical Education and Sport, 21(3), 123-145.
- Collins, M. A. (2018). Integrating Physical and Mental Health Education in School Curricula: A Comprehensive Approach. International Journal of Health Sciences Education, 5(2), 67-82.
- Davis, R. T. (2017). The Impact of Physical Education on Social Skills Development in Children. Physical Education and Sport Pedagogy, 22(1), 89-104.
- Garcia, S. M. (2019). Physical Education as a Means of Promoting Emotional Well-being: A Cross-sectional Study. Journal of School Health, 89(5), 356-363.
- Johnson, L. C. (2018). The Effects of Physical Education on Cognitive Functioning in School-age Children. Journal of Educational Psychology, 110(3), 456-471.
- Martinez, A. B. (2020). The Role of Physical Education in Promoting Positive Body Image in Adolescents. Journal of Adolescent Health, 65(4), 567-574.
- Nelson, J. P. (2016). The Relationship between Physical Education and Academic Performance: A Meta-analysis. Research Quarterly for Exercise and Sport, 87(2), 152-161.
- Roberts, T. S. (2017). The Benefits of Physical Education in Enhancing Motor Skills in Children with Developmental Disabilities. Adapted Physical Activity Quarterly, 34(3), 277-291.
- Thompson, R. M. (2019). The Role of Physical Education in Promoting Lifelong Physical Activity: A Longitudinal Study. Journal of Physical Activity and Health, 16(6), 456-465.
- Wilson, E. D. (2018). Physical Education and Moral Development: Fostering Ethical Decision-making through Sports and Games. Journal of Moral Education, 47(2), 214-230.
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Essay on Physical Education in School for Students in 1000+ Words
In this article, we have published an essay on physical education in school. It includes its meaning, importance, and benefits. Also, how is physical education good for our health?
Table of Contents
Essay on Physical Education in School (1000 Words)
Physical education is essential because it improves the fitness of youngsters, makes them disciplined and active. It helps them to find out teamwork, test their decision-making capabilities too.
Education should be mandatory in every school, from preschools, primary, elementary to secondary school and also in colleges, hostels. But we should always not force them to try to do it, and they ought to be made conscious of its benefits.
The goal of education is to assist students in developing healthy habits that can serve them within the long term. In today’s world, things have become easy due to technology, and we are enjoying the facilities like no other generation.
Adults spend their whole day in air-cooled offices; they eat food, don’t find time to exercise. It’s getting to be very tough for our generation.
If we get good healthy habits now, once we are within the school, it’ll help us now and within the future. It’s a dire need of your time.
The education system should be proactive and make it mandatory in schools. So allow us to see why do children need physical education?
With education, children can improve their fitness, body posture, and ultimately it’ll boost their confidence.
It helps students to make good habits from an early age. Running, jogging, weight training, eating, and sleeping on time are a few habits that can help them in the future.
One of the essential aspects of education is discipline . It’ll help them to plan their studies, finances, and life generally.
They’re going to be ready to allot time to studies and for fun too. Alongside academics, children should get time to be children; it’s the most uncomplicated phase of human life.
Interpersonal Skills & Team Work
Physical education and sports improve the interpersonal skills of youngsters. These skills are very crucial at work and within the relationship.
Physical education teaches the way to communicate messages effectively and the way to figure them together.
Education comes with exams, assignments, projects, and homework, which can stress students.
Alongside this, they even have parents’ expectations burden, Financial worries. In today’s time, the overuse of social media makes them suffer from social anxiety, envy, and FOMO.
In this case, education becomes an excellent outlet. It cuts them from these worries and situations. Due to it, they’re going to be ready to focus more on studies and life generally.
Makes you Confident
With improved interpersonal skills, relaxed and calm composure, and healthy habits, one becomes more confident. Physical education plays a notable role during this too.
Alternate Career Opportunity
Everyone is different; not all students will be great at academics, and there is no such rule. Children find themselves in trouble with selecting a career . Education can help them during this also. One might find the internet in sports and games.
Physical education may be an excellent opportunity to scout for potential athletic talent also. They were within the suitable career matters tons.
If one gets to try to do a thing they like to do, their lives will be happier. Physical education can help them to seek out that or a minimum of narrow down the alternatives.
Health is Wealth
Our current generation is affected by obesity from an early age. They also get spectacles at an old age. Obesity comes with related illnesses too.
An obese child is susceptible to diseases like diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, stress, vital sign, etc. Habits formed with education will make them fit from infancy. It’ll encourage them to enhance and maintain their health in the future.
Children inculcate with the importance of physical education for maintaining a healthy body and teach them the importance of regular fitness activity in daily routine, which successively keeps them happy and energized.
It helps the youngsters to take care of their fitness, develop their muscular strength, and increase their stamina.
Research has proven that children who regularly play different types of sports lead to high self-confidence, which is essential for building a person’s character.
Education instills the will to participate, enjoy the victory, and take defeat positively, developing the character’s general personality.
By making children participate in sports, especially team sports, education also imbibes in them a way of solidarity. Children find out how to figure as a team member, organize themselves, and perform together towards attaining a goal.
It successively improves a child’s overall communication skills and, therefore, urges alongside different people.
Physical education helps one gain knowledge about the general aspects of physical health. Teenagers face many health-related problems like obesity, anemia, bulimia, and even diabetes, which are rampant amongst teenagers.
Through education, teachers can promote the advantages of healthy and nutritious food and discourage them from having food by highlighting their ill effects. They will easily promote sound eating practices and guidelines for nutrition.
Physical education also teaches about the importance of private hygiene and the importance of cleanliness . They guide the scholars by informing them about the essential hygiene practices for maintaining health and well-being throughout life.
Additionally, to the present, the education classes also cover a crucial aspect that the youngsters need to affect at puberty.
Apart from the health and knowledge benefits that students get from education, they also learn how to unwind and relieve themselves of stress and anxiety. Sports and other fitness activities offered within the education classes are a welcome break for the scholars.
It won’t be wrong to mention that children, who learn the importance of health and hygiene at an early age, tend to get older to be responsible and healthy adults who are conscious of the advantages of a healthy lifestyle.
Children who provided good education are more likely to become responsible adults who know the importance of a healthy lifestyle.
It is proven that physical activities help us to alleviate stress. Though we all know its importance, we make all possible excuses to avoid it.
Physical education helps us to take care of a timely schedule of physical activities. Students become calmer composed; then, they will focus more on their goals.
The Bottom Line
Physical education leads to a more focused, active, composed, and happy in life . It makes us disciplined and arranged.
Habits formed with the assistance of education tend to remain with us for an extended time. We should bring skilled coaches and needed equipment to colleges.
Students should know its benefits. There are real advantages of education and in the present situation, children, also as adults, need it the foremost.
The opportunity to participate in physical activity daily in schools may increase the probability of adopting a physically active lifestyle.
Choosing to measure a physically active lifestyle is vital to health and wellness. A school’s education department is responsible for assisting students in being involved in and adopting a private lifestyle of regular physical activity.
I hope you liked this essay on physical education in school for students and children.
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Importance of physical education
Meaning of physical education.
Physical education has turned out to be an integral part of the lives of people where it ensures a better health and assures them a happy life ahead. As far as the meaning of physical education is concerned, it can be defined as the process of bringing changes in an individual’s life that are usually brought about by various experiences.
It not only aims at the physical health, but also incorporates other important aspects such as the mental, spiritual, social, emotional and moral health. All such things are acquired by the same sets of physical activities that can bring multiple benefits to an individual.
It would not be anyhow wrong if physical education is considered as a play way process of education. This is because it really educates people about various important issues such as proper eating habits, right lifestyles, and similar stuff but one never realizes that he or she is actually trying to educate themselves as they feel like playing and enjoying their time when they actually are involved in such physical education. Several people have given their own definition of physical education. As per some, it is an education of as well as through human movement in which various educational objectives are attained by him or her by the means of several muscle activities that involve games, sports , gymnastics, exercises and dance. As per others, it is a part of education that provides instructions towards the acre and development of the whole body ranging from some of the simpler exercises to the tougher ones.
Importance of physical education:
Physical education is not only about having a sound physical health but is also concerned about various other aspects of the personality of any individual. It works towards shaping the overall personality of a human being.
Given blow is a list of factors that would help people in knowing the real importance of physical education in the society:
- Maintenance of physical health: Physical fitness is one of the most vital aspects that determine the quality of life lead by any person. A healthy lifestyle ensures a better health and this is the reason that right eating habits along with the required exercise is known to be the key to a sound physical health. Physical education makes people aware about these factors and helps them attain good health through various activities that it incorporates.
- Confidence booster: A sound health ultimately leads to confidence boosting, when a person feels physically fit, he or she feels highly confident. Thus physical fitness helps in improving the confidence of a person.
- It further helps people understand about the right nutritional facts and about the proper eating habits. Physical education makes them aware of the things that are required in order to have a great health.
- It also makes people develop some important qualities like sportsmanship and team spirit. All such things help them grow in life.
- It also helps in ensuring an overall cognitive health that is associated with the mental health which is the first requirement in the modern times where everyone is highly involved in their busy lifestyles.
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Why Physical Education Is Important Essay
Essay on physical education.
The Margaret Eaton School (MES) played an important role in Canadian physical education during a period of time known as the “golden age” for women’s sport in Canada. This essay will discuss how Margaret Eaton School came to be and why it is considered one of the leading schools in the development of women’s physical education in Canada in 1901, with the help of Emma Scott Raff and Margaret Eaton. The school started out as “The School of Expression” focusing on theatre and physical culture, and later (1925) shifted its views to focus solely on physical education. I plan to argue that from 1901 to 1942, the Margaret Eaton School played an innovative role in Canada in the development of physical education by offering women a comprehensive
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Response To Writing In Physical Education
Response to Lauren It is very true that it is always easier to write about something you know well, like about your life and personal experiences. When the topic is not familiar to students, then they need to do research to stimulate their writing. It is important to show ELLs how to do research and how to use it, so students start getting more confident and less scare about a blank paper. Response to Ana Villanueva I am happy that my students in physical education class are not the only ones that complain about writing in class that is not English language arts.…
Improving The Lunch System: A Case Study
Overweight and obesity rates are still concerning us after improving the lunch system. According to the staff and faculty of the school, the kids are having adequate physical activity but have they witnessed that their diets are still poor. Some of them are bringing their own lunches and snacks from home, which usually are not the healthy options containing high amounts of sugar and fat. If they bring those choices from home, it is very probable that their diets at home are poor. The Center of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) shows that childhood obesity prevalence has stayed the same high rates in the last decade after tripling in the last few decades.…
Public Nutrition Program Analysis
Thank you, this is Eromosele, I love Grand Canyon UniversityHealthy eating is connected with decreased risk for many diseases and some other leading causes of death like cancer, diabetes, stoke, heart disease and so many others. Nutrition program was thought to be for the poor deloping countries. SNAP played important role in making sure that these developing countries get this food they needed to prevent malnutrition and other preventable disease like diabetes, heart disease and so on. Today, some Americans are faced with the same problem of malnutrition that it is no longer a problem of only developing conuntries. Unhealthy food choices need multidiciplinary approach in fighting off this problems.…
Nutrition Intervention Paper
The program will focus on nutrition and a physical activity intervention. The nutrition intervention will be made up of two components, the first is the education section and the second is providing safe and healthy lunches and snacks for children. The education component of the intervention will be held in classrooms and will be facilitated by trained teachers. Children will participate in a bi-weekly interactive classroom activity for the entire school year. This is meant to develop their understanding about the nutritional benefits of fruits and vegetables.…
Essay On Physical Education Observation
I had the ability to observe a physical education class co-taught by Ms. Mussell and Ms. Potts. This fifty-minute physical education class at Saint Anthony Middle School was an insightful experience. The Saint Anthony Middle School is attached to the high school, but is distinctly separated. The drive to Saint Anthony school district was not lengthy at all; it is located within welcoming residential area. Upon entering the school, I observed a diverse student population.…
Importance Of Sports In School Essay
School is one of the most defining parts of a person’s life. It is where a student picks who or what he/she wants to be in their life, as well as the place to get tons of new information to succeed. Certain moments and activities during school can be life defining experiences. A student’s involvement in sports is one of these moments mentioned earlier. Sports can contribute so much more than just physical activity.…
Should Physical Education Be Compulsory In School
Physical Education can help students in other classes. Physical education will help students in other school classes because it gets the students brain more focused. Research states that reading and math are the two subjects that are most influenced by physical education because these subjects focus on efficient and effective function, which has been associated to physical activity.…
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