Social Capital: A Key Ingredient in the Development of Physical Activity Leadership

in Journal of Teaching in Physical Education
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Purpose: This research investigated how social capital relates to physical education (PE) teachers’ abilities to facilitate physical activity (PA) outside of PE class in their schools. Methods: Twenty-seven elementary PE teachers were interviewed. Data were analyzed using a multistep qualitative coding process ending in a cross-case analysis. Results: Among the three components of social capital (trustworthiness, norms, and information networks), positive norms around PE, and more broadly, PA, were most important for creating a physically active culture in schools. Trustworthiness was important, but less so than positive norms, and information networks were relatively unimportant for creating a culture of PA. Time was a limiting factor, because without it, PE teachers could not develop the social capital needed to promote PA. Conclusions: Becoming a PA leader is not just a function of will and motivation; rather, PE teachers must be supported with time and positive norms around PE and PA, which requires engagement of district and school leaders.

Wenner, Tucker, Calvert, and Turner are with the College of Education, and Johnson is with the Department of Kinesiology, Boise State University, Boise, ID.

Address author correspondence to Hannah Calvert at hannahcalvert898@boisestate.edu.
Journal of Teaching in Physical Education
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