Prevalence and Correlates of Physical Fitness Testing in U.S. Schools-2000

By Morrow, James R., Jr.; Fulton, Janet E. et al. | Research Quarterly for Exercise and Sport, June 2008 | Go to article overview

Prevalence and Correlates of Physical Fitness Testing in U.S. Schools-2000


Morrow, James R., Jr., Fulton, Janet E., Brener, Nancy D., Kohl, Harold W.,, III, Research Quarterly for Exercise and Sport


Because of the perceived lack of youth physical fitness and/or concerns for increased obesity, physical education teachers are interested in youth fitness and physical activity levels. Statewide mandates are being developed that require school-based teachers to complete physical fitness testing. Data from the nationally representative School Health Policies and Programs Study 2000 were analyzed to investigate the prevalence of fitness testing and the professional characteristics of fitness test users. Data were collected with teachers of either randomly selected classes in elementary schools and randomly selected required physical education courses in middle/junior high and senior high schools (N = 1,564). The prevalence of fitness test use is 65 % across all school levels. Variables associated with physical fitness test usage were professionally oriented. Results showed that teachers in secondary schools (odds ratio [OR] = 2. 25, 95 % confidence interval [CI] = 1.18-4.2 7), those with degrees in physical education/kinesiology-related disciplines (OR = 2. 01, 95 % CI = 1.11-3. 63), and those who had completed staff development on physical fitness testing (OR = 3.22, 95 % CI= 1.86-5.60) were more likely than respondents without these characteristics to engage in physical fitness testing. Results changed little when separate analyses were conducted for classes/courses in districts requiring versus not requiring fitness testing. Financial variables, including fitness-oriented facilities available, metropolitan location, and discretionary expenditures per student, were not associated with fitness test use. Results provided national prevalence of school-based physical fitness testing use in the U. S. and conveyed information about those who currently use physical fitness tests.

Key words: health, health-related fitness, schools, SHPPS

**********

Interest in physical fitness levels and fitness testing among American children and youth is often traced to Kraus and Hirschland's (1954) report declaring American youth were less fit than their European peers. As a result of that alarming report, steps were taken to remedy the perceived problem. Efforts ultimately led to developing what is today the President's Council on Physical Fitness and Sport (PCPFS). Concurrent with the creation of the PCPFS, the American Association for Health, Physical Education and Recreation (AAHPER) initiated a Youth Fitness Test Project that resulted in the AAHPER Youth Fitness Test (AAHPER, 1958). This test, often referred to as the "President's Physical Fitness Test," because children and youth earned the Presidential Physical Fitness Award for achieving at least the 85th percentile on all test items, was the first attempt at nationwide physical fitness testing in the United States.

Over the next 20 years, the original AAHPER Youth Fitness Test was modified (AAHPERD, 1976). Meanwhile, discussions of the various youth fitness test batteries and items occurred, many of which contrasted health- and performance-related physical fitness (Caspersen, Powell, & Christensen, 1985; Murphy, 1986; Pate, 1988). Two widely used tests were developed and modified over the years. The most recent versions are the President's Challenge (2003b) and the FITNESSGRAM (The Cooper Institute, 2004). Seefeldt and Vogel (1989) suggested this modification period was one of misguided efforts. Nevertheless, fitness testing is widely conducted in schools.

Recently, Burgeson, Wechsler, Brener, Young, and Spain (2001) reported on state and school district requirements for fitness tests in schools. In 2000, 18% of states and 20.4% of districts required senior high schools to administer fitness tests, 15.7% of states and 21.3% of districts required middle/junior high schools do so, and 13.7% of states and 18.3% of districts required elementary schools to give such tests. Among states and districts that required fitness testing, the President's Challenge was most often used (11. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Prevalence and Correlates of Physical Fitness Testing in U.S. Schools-2000
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.