Students Opinions and Attitudes towards Physical Education Classes in Kuwait Public Schools

Article excerpt

n and attitude toward physical education classes. Two thousand seven hundred (2700) students answered the survey: 1239 (45.3%) were male students and 1497 (54.7%) were female from Kuwait six districts: Al_Hawalli, Al_Asimah, Al_Jahra, Al_Mobarak, Al_Farwniah, Al_Ahmadi.

Weight Status was determined from self reported height in meters and weight in kilometers and was calculated to determine the Body Mass Index. It was found that (24.7%) of both male and female were overweight and (12.4%) were obese.

More than half of students (55.6%) agree that health education classes should be taught through physical education classes. Students believe of the importance of physical education classes (75.2%) and agree that physical education classes grades should be added to the overall grades (48.9%). They indicated that physical education classes are fun (72.8%), make them feel happy (67.7%), and satisfied (60.5%). They acknowledged that physical education classes keep them fit (64.3%) and healthy (68.3%). Through physical education they indicate that they acquire more friends (67.3%).

In order to change the student's perception toward physical education classes, appropriate national curriculum must be implemented by ministry of education. Physical education curriculum should be ensuring students are receiving the minimal level of physical education through their school year. Health education can be related to physical education classes and should be taught through physical education classes to increase the understanding of their quality and healthy lifestyle.

Introduction

Today, obesity is a major health concern in Kuwait(A1 Orifan et al. (2007), and has the highest level of obesity in the world (American public Health association, 2005; Jackson, Al-mousa, and al-Raqua, 2001; Active Living Research, 2007; El- Bayoumy, Shady, & Lofty, 2009). Seventy five of the population is obese and child obesity is rising (American public Health association, 2005). Rapid modernization which leads to dietary and physical activity patterns changed often hypothesized to be the major catalyst in Kuwait obesity epidemic (Rubenstein, 2005; Al-Isa, 2004; & El-Bayoumy, 2009). The Surgeon General recommendation children should engage in 60 minutes of moderate activity, yet estimates show that 3.8 percent of elementary schools provide daily physical education (lee et al., 2006).schools serve as an excellent venue tp provide student with opportunity for daily physical activity, to teach the importance of regular physical activity for health, and to build skills that support active life style (Active Living research, 2007).

Physical activity is positively related to health and well-being where lack of activity increases risk of many disease and early death (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services [USDHHS], 1996; USDHHS, 1997; National Association for Sport and Physical Education [NASPE], 1995; & American Alliance for health, physical Education, Recreation and Dance [AAHPERD], 2003 & American Heart Association (AHA), 2008). Many specialists declared the importance of thinking about the quality of health and exercise to improve the quality of life through 30 minutes practice of moderate exercise (USDHHS, 1996) and current recommendation are for children to engage in at least 60 minute physical activity each day (American Heart Association (AHA), 2008)

Experts believe that physical education (PE) is necessary and essential in school for students at every grade (The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 1997; NASPE, 1995; & McGinnis, Kanner, DeGraw, 1991) and as a graduation requirement (AAHPERD, 1997). At this level PE has the potential to make a unique contribution to the education of all learners and could improve cognitive, social, emotional and physical development (Calfas ,1994; Fishburne, 1992; Keays, 1993) and enhance health related fitness and provide graduates with the knowledge, attitude, motor skills, and behavioral skills they need to adopt an active lifestyle that will persist throughout their lifetime. …

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