Research Paper: Presidential Fitness Testing National Significance

Pages: 11 (2912 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 10  ·  Level: Master's  ·  Topic: Sports  ·  Buy This Paper

SAMPLE EXCERPT:

[. . .] Once again citing the current obesity epidemic and generally poor health of America's population, states like Illinois continue to face significant obstacles in their journey to healthily prepare their students for adulthood. With ghastly increases in fast food consumption and video gaming throughout the youth population, physical fitness education remains extremely arduous in the modern environment . Additionally, the current financial situation in many central states has caused educational budgets to be cut and much financing to be lost. As this situation is compounded by the already unhealthy environment in which many Illinoisan children live, fitness education and testing has become an increasingly uphill battle for educators.

The unfortunately aforementioned circumstances in Illinois and across the country have caused there to be an extreme shortage in educational spending in the arena of physical fitness research and improvement. As a result, many fitness requirements have declined and several schools have been granted waivers allowing them to forgo physical fitness for large student demographics . While many states (including Illinois) require daily physical education for all students, the dire budget situation has forced state lawmakers to create these loopholes for schools requiring greater amounts of resources to be dedicated to academics . Therefore, while the law also mandates fitness testing for every student, the results for Illinois and many of its peers have been subpar due to these recent lamentable developments. Moreover, many unfit students have discovered the previously mentioned loopholes and have actively attempted to escape physical education for fear that they might "suffer untold humiliation due to their lack of physical prowess." Other schools have even begun to take away physical education classes as a means of punishing students who misbehave. These schools are perhaps the most deplorable in that they are putting the health of their students at risk when there are several other effective disciplinary outlets available. In fact, many critics of this technique claim that these schools are simply trying to save themselves money by not physically educating a large portion of their student populations.

As one might assume, fitness evaluations have become equally lax over this period. The steadily increasing fitness requirements present in several states throughout the 1980's and 1990's have begun to decline. Lack of funding for such initiatives at the national level has carried over into the state ranks . And while states like Illinois experience extreme educational budget cuts, physical education departments have been shown to be considered the most expendable. Therefore, not only have fitness-testing requirements suffered but also the quality and presence of reliable teaching professionals has been equally diminished . And without qualified and attentive staff members to prepare students for fitness tests and subsequently administer the various assessments, there is not much chance for success in this highly critical educative arena. With less and less Presidential Fitness Awards being given out each year and more and more reasons being created for children to be excused from physical education, the structure and environment surrounding this critical area of education seem unquestionably culpable .

Methods

The tactical method used for this inquiry will involve a strategic variation of school districts. Ultimately, the goal of this assessment will be to compare several commonly utilized physical education curriculums in order to determine which method best prepares students for success in the Presidential Fitness Test. Schools already utilizing the Presidential Fitness Test as their primary means of assessing students' in the physical education classroom will act as somewhat of a control group. For presumably, these institutions will be following the federally recommended guidelines for preparing children to successfully complete all Presidential Fitness Tests. Other schools utilizing more non-traditional approaches to fitness evaluation (like Body Mass Index) will then be subjected to the full plethora of Presidential Fitness Tests.

Population

The usable population for this study will accurately represent a cross section of Illinois' entire citizen pool. Data will be collected from districts in Illinois' most rural areas as well as its highly urban zones. Historical performance data will also be consulted in order to ensure that the findings are not biased. Student participants will also be strategically chosen to ideally represent an accurate cross section of each school's population. An equal number of boys and girls will be chosen at each location. Additionally, a select number of student athletes will be chosen at each location, while an equal number of disabled and regularly excused students will also be selected. These specific populations comprise an important part of this investigation especially since each individual district typically customizes and personalizes fitness requirements to meet the needs of such students. Lastly, several teaching professionals will be monitored during the fitness test. Being that the knowledge and reliability of these professionals can often affect a student's performance on the Presidential Fitness Test, it is important to be equally objective and thorough in selecting and monitoring the performance of these educative participants as well.

Instruments

The instruments used in this study will be relatively simple. Normal Presidential Fitness Testing Standards will apply in all cases. And even with the multi-faceted nature of this national fitness assessment, the facility requirements are quite minimal. Each child selected will be given five examinations, which culminate to comprise the entire Presidential Physical Fitness Test . The individual tests are as follows: curl-ups (or partial curl-ups), shuttle run, endurance run/walk, pull-ups (or right angle push-ups or flexed-arm hang) and V-sit reach (or sit and reach) . Therefore, while this wide array of testing is certainly comprehensive, it merely requires the school to be equipped with a track and a normal gymnasium. Proctors will be required to monitor and account for good form throughout the fitness examination, keep track of the number of properly completed repetitions, as well as keeping time on several of the events using stopwatches. Members of this proposal will also be monitoring the diligence of proctors and subsequently collecting their final data (or collecting additional data if a proctor is deemed to be negligent or unqualified).

Procedure of Data Analysis

Once a sufficient amount of accurate data has been collected from all of the pre-selected locations, members of the investigative team will proceed to compile this data into an easily comparable format. Initially, each student's individual data will be presented against the benchmarks set by The President's Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition to determine whether or not he or she would be a potential recipient of the Presidential Fitness Award. The actual benchmarks for this award are determined by the student's age and gender. The classification chart is as follows:

By specifically calculating the number of boys and girls from each school that qualify for the Presidential Fitness Award, school data will become easily comparable. Presumably, the schools with the greatest number of Presidential Fitness Award-winning students will be shown to prepare their students the best for this examination. This data can also be segmented into smaller groups (i.e. student athletes, disabled students, students that are regularly excused from PE class) in order to establish further conclusions.

Bibliography

Block, J.P., Scribner, R.A., & DeSalvo, K.B. (2004). Fast Food Race/Ethnicity, and Income: A Geographic Analysis. American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 27 (3).

Center for Disease Control and Prevention. (2011). Prevalence of Obesity Among Children and Adolescents: The United States, Trends 1963-1965 Through 2007-2008. Retrieved February 17, 2011, from http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/hestat/obesity_child_07_08/obesity_child_07_08.htm

Kraus, H. (1953). Muscular Fitness and Health. Journal of the American Association for Health, Physical Education, and Recreation, 3 (11).

Mannion, A. (2001, March 8). Parents Protest Use of BMI in PE Grades. The Chicago Tribune .

Morrow, J.J., Jackson, A., Disch, J., & Mood, D. (2005). Measurement and Evaluation in Human Performance (3rd Edition ed.). Champaign, IL: Human Kinetics.

National Conference of State Legislatures. (2011). Childhood Overweight and Obesity Trends. Retrieved July 18, 2011, from http://www.ncsl.org/?tabid=13877

Olds, T., Tomkinson, G., Leger, L., & Cazorla, G. (2006). Worldwide Variation in the Performance of Children and Adolescents: An Analysis of 109 Studies of the 20-Meter Shuttle Run Test in 37 Countries. Journal of Sports Sciences, 24 (10), 1025-1038.

Parker, T. (2008, May 15). The Presidential Fitness Test Grows Up. The New York Times .

Pohjonen, T. (2001). Age-Related Physical Fitness and the Predictive Values of Fitness Tests for Work Ability. Journal of Occupational & Environmental Medicine, 44 (8), 723-730.

The Department of Health and Human Services. (2011). President's Council History. Retrieved July 18, 2011, from http://www.fitness.gov/about/history_narrative/index.html

The President's Council on Fitness, Sports and… [END OF PREVIEW]

President Kennedy's Contribution to Physical Education Term Paper


Nike 2004 Term Paper


Women Representation in Law Enforcement Thesis


Weaknesses in the Legal System as it Relates to Deaf People Term Paper


View 7 other related papers  >>

Cite This Research Paper:

APA Format

Presidential Fitness Testing National Significance.  (2011, July 19).  Retrieved October 14, 2019, from https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/presidential-fitness-testing-national/6538577

MLA Format

"Presidential Fitness Testing National Significance."  19 July 2011.  Web.  14 October 2019. <https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/presidential-fitness-testing-national/6538577>.

Chicago Format

"Presidential Fitness Testing National Significance."  Essaytown.com.  July 19, 2011.  Accessed October 14, 2019.
https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/presidential-fitness-testing-national/6538577.