This study compared the fitness of Black African early adolescents with and without mild mental retardation. Participants included 30 purposively selected early adolescent Black Africans with mild mental retardation aged 11-14 from three schools for children with mild mental retardation in Southern Botswana and 30 randomly selected early adolescents of similar ages without mental retardation. Participants were assessed on a number of standard fitness variables including the Rockport Walk Test. In general, when compared to participants without mental retardation, participants with mild mental retardation exhibited low levels of fitness. Based on study results, the Ministry of Education is called upon to urgently put in place policies and programs that would reverse the low level of fitness among adolescents with mild mental retardation.
The author is with the Department of Physical Education and Recreation at the University of Botswana, Gaborone. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.