The deleterious effects of weight bias in physical activity spaces for children, adolescents, and adults are well documented. Different types of weight bias occur, and they interact at multiple levels within a person’s ecology, from the messaging of often unattainable sociocultural thin/muscular ideals and physical inequities (e.g., equipment not appropriate for body shapes and sizes) to interpersonal and public discriminatory comments. However, the most damaging is the internalization and application of negative weight-bias stereotypes by those with overweight and obesity to themselves. An imperative for social justice is now; there is great need to advocate for, provide support for, and design inclusive physical activity spaces to reduce weight bias so that all individuals feel welcome, accept their bodies, and are empowered to live a healthy, active lifestyle. To make this a reality, an interdisciplinary and preventive approach is needed to understand bias and how to minimize it in our spaces.
Paul Bernard Rukavina
Luciana Zuest, Saemi Lee, Juliana Leedeman, and Dawn E. Clifford
Research shows that physical activity (PA) -related professionals perpetuate weight stigma and discrimination in their practices by holding antifat attitudes. Given the adverse outcomes associated with weight stigma and discrimination (including PA avoidance), researchers and fat activists have proposed and implemented a range of strategies to reduce weight stigma and cultivate inclusive PA settings. In this paper, we summarized and organized research-informed strategies for reducing weight stigma and creating weight-inclusive climates in fitness spaces. We adopted a socioecological model to organize a variety of strategies for improving weight inclusivity in fitness spaces at the intrapersonal, interpersonal, and structural levels. Ranging from staff training to adjusting the physical space, the strategies proposed in this paper aim at dismantling limited and harmful weight-centric narratives and practices that keep fat individuals marginalized from PA settings.
Cassandra Iannucci and Kevin Andrew Richards
Emerging research suggests that the stress and complexities of the teaching profession contribute to early exits from the field. Stressors may be increased when individuals are tasked with teaching physical education and another school subject(s) concurrently. More specifically, role conflict in teaching multiple school subjects consists of three subdomains: status conflict, schedule conflict, and energy expenditure. The purpose of this paper is to propose a theoretically informed conceptual model of this type of conflict that better informs the professional lives and careers of teachers. The framework’s three interrelated elements are dynamic and contextually bound and influence the experience of multiple subjects role conflict. These three elements include experiences of role conflict, contextual and individual factors, and an outer limit of individuals’ capacity to manage stressors. Three vignettes are used to illustrate how teachers’ experiences of conflict interact with contextual and individual factors to increase or decrease their capacity for stress.
Andrew Sortwell, Daniel A. Marinho, Jorge Knijnik, and Ricardo Ferraz
Physical education (PE) plays a central role in children’s and young people’s holistic development, enabling cognitive, psychomotor, and affective development while boosting healthy lifestyles and socialization. Children equipped with developed motor abilities, such as muscular strength and power, will be better prepared to learn motor performance skills and sustain the demands of learning and playing games and sports. A scientific literature search was conducted in January 2021 to identify all relevant controlled studies from January 2000 to 2021 on PE interventions and strategies based on resistance training to achieve PE outcomes. The review showed that exposure to resistance exercises in PE lessons might be beneficial for primary school students’ general physical fitness, motor performance skills proficiency, and learning diversified sport skills. Interventions that include muscular strength and power development can support adequate muscular fitness and motor performance skill proficiency to achieve primary school PE outcomes.
Gregg Twietmeyer and Tyler G. Johnson
The modern sports world is currently obsessed with records, data, statistics, and/or the objective measurement of human performance. A primary message originating from this trend—manifesting in youth, club, interscholastic, intercollegiate, and professional sport—is that breaking records and improving one’s statistical output is the main objective of sport. In this article, we argue for why a predominant focus on records, stats, and winning is self-limiting and thereby misses the mark of what sport and sporting performance are. It is human beings who play sports rather than mere physical mechanical objects. Furthermore, we propose an arete-based philosophical perspective—taken directly from the ancient Greeks and particularly Aristotle—for how we ought to conceptualize and pursue sport. An arete-based philosophy captures the true essence of what sport is about by rooting it in what is “good and beautiful” (kalokagathia as the Greeks called it). Arete or “virtue” is, for Aristotle, about the cultivation of human excellence. Excellence, however, is not myopically reduced to “being the best,” “achieving fame or honor,” or “winning.” Instead, arete aims at cultivating the skills, both kinesthetic and moral, that lead to a good life. Elite performance, no matter how impressive, is never more than one small aspect of such a life. Character matters too, which means human excellence is never reducible to the measurable. After articulating this Aristotelian philosophy of sport, we then conclude the article by offering five recommendations for how teachers, coaches, and leaders of sport organizations can improve the culture of sport. Physical educators and coaches would be wise to take this Aristotelian conception of arete to heart.
Athletes have long been activists, but the historical presentation and understanding of that activism is complex, constantly shifting, and wrought with contradictions and paradoxes. In this article, I call attention to facts and narratives around social justice, including how kinesiology and its subdisciplines embrace and afford opportunities to women and racial and ethnic minorities and casts them in their visions for the future. Neither raw statistics of (under- or over-) representation nor promises of a brighter future are likely to have any impact or contribute to understanding until they are presented in coherent narratives that include, or are preferably created by, affected voices. Only when kinesiology is producing a critical volume of these narratives can it truly claim to be contributing to social justice.
Scott W.T. McNamara, Melissa Bittner, Heather Katz, and Kelly Hangauer
The coronavirus pandemic required teachers to abruptly turn to online settings to deliver instruction. Unfortunately, evidence-based guidance for online instruction in the field of physical education is lacking, specifically for students with disabilities. Therefore, this scoping review sought to identify peer-reviewed literature addressing online learning in K–12 adapted physical education settings. The Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews extension for Scoping Reviews Checklist was used to guide this scoping review. A database search was conducted for relevant articles, and a data charting process was completed to identify articles meeting inclusion criteria. Five articles were determined to be within the scope of this review (one research article and four commentary articles). This scoping review highlighted a lack of literature pertaining to online learning in K–12 adapted physical education. Considering the likelihood of online learning becoming increasingly relevant, more concerted efforts are needed to investigate trends in these settings to determine best practices and how students with disabilities experience adapted physical education within an online setting.
Eve Bernstein, Ingrid Johnson, Tess Armstrong, and Ulana Lysniak
This study investigated physical education Facebook social media platforms to analyze comments by in-service teachers regarding their perceptions and experiences using competitive activities during secondary physical education classes. The last 5 years’ worth of initial postings and successive comments by a member and group members were examined. The community of practice framework guided this study. Data were compared with appropriate practice in sport. Over 745 lines of data, teachers’ responses were analyzed using NVivo (version 10.0). The first theme focused on the real game and the athlete. The second theme discussed separating genders; this theme had two subthemes, including (a) skill and gender: coed is great if you have skill and (b) gender-specific activities. The third theme focused on inappropriate activities, toughening up students, and that keeping score is fun. Results indicated teachers’ shared and conflicted perceptions that involved skill and gender during competitive activities.