Strength-Training as an Alternative Physical Education Pilot Program for Non-Active Middle-School Girls

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David F. Vanata Ashland University

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Beth J. Patton Ashland University

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Although opportunities for female adolescents to participate in organized sports and physical activities are readily available, currently observed trends among female adolescents indicate nationwide decreases in physical fitness and involvement in physical education (PE) classes. The objective of this study was to evaluate the effects of an alternative strength-conditioning PE pilot program among non-active middle-school-aged girls who were not involved in sports. The alternative strength-training PE program met twice weekly for eight-weeks and incorporated exercises using free-weights, exercise balls, resistance bands, and fitness steps. Students participating in this program tailored their workouts to meet their individual interests. Results indicated that girls involved in the alternative program significantly improved from their baseline means scores for cardiovascular and strength measurements. No significant differences in fitness assessments were observed pre/post among the girls involved in traditional PE classes. The present study demonstrates that alternative strength-training PE classes can be effective in improving fitness levels among non-active middle-school-aged female students who are not involved in sports.

David F. Vanata, Ph.D., R.D., L.D. Associate Professor Foods and Nutrition Ashland University 401 College Avenue Ashland, OH 44805 Email: dvanata@ashland.edu Phone:

(419) 289-5292

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