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Xihe Zhu and Ang Chen

This study examined the relation between adolescent expectancy-value motivation, achievements, and after-school physical activity participation. Adolescents (N = 854) from 12 middle schools completed an expectancy-value motivation questionnaire, pre and posttests in psychomotor skill and health-related fitness knowledge tests, and a three-day after-school Physical Activity Recall. Data were analyzed using structural equation modeling to test an a priori model. Results revealed that expectancy belief significantly predicted adolescent psychomotor achievement, and that psychomotor achievement was the only direct significant predictor for physical activity participation (p < .05). Expectancy belief and task values were not significantly directly associated with adolescent physical activity participation (p > .05). The findings suggested the relation between adolescent expectancy-value motivation and physical activity participation is likely to be mediated by their psychomotor skill achievement.

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Austin J. Kulp and Xihe Zhu

Background/Purpose: Before school exercise programs (BSEPs) give students time for breakfast and add time to their daily physical activity. However, the effects of BSEP on physical fitness and academic achievement in the classroom remain unclear. The purpose of this study is to examine the effects of BSEP on cardiorespiratory fitness and academic performance among fourth- and fifth-grade students. Method: A retrospective case-controlled design was used in this study. Fourth and fifth graders (N = 84) were participants, half signed up for BSEP that met once a week for 10 weeks. A retrospectively case-controlled comparison group was generated from the classmates of those in BSEP in the same school. All students took PACER and statewide academic performance assessments. Multivariate analysis of covariance for student cardiorespiratory fitness, and mathematics and reading, were conducted, adjusting for pretest performances. Analysis/Results: There were improvements for both groups in academic performances and cardiorespiratory fitness. The cardiorespiratory fitness and reading test improvements were greater in the BSEP group than those in the comparison group, controlling for their pretests. However, there was no significant difference in student mathematics test performances. Conclusion: Students in BSEP group benefited from participating in the program with greater improvement in cardiorespiratory and reading test performances than the comparison group. These findings suggested that providing a BSEP once a week for 45 min may be beneficial to fourth and fifth graders.

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Xihe Zhu and Justin A. Haegele

Purpose: This study aims to (a) examine elementary school students’ health-related fitness knowledge growth under one curriculum condition and (b) examine the impacts of student/school-level factors on health-related fitness knowledge and its growth rate in physical education. Method: We used an observational, longitudinal repeated-measures design, and conducted analyses on an existing dataset. Participants were 7,479 third, fourth, and fifth graders (48.9% girls) from 152 elementary schools. Measures were a knowledge test and sex at the student level, and socioeconomic data, academic performance, and student–faculty ratio at the school level. We ran three-level hierarchical linear models on the data. Results: Fitness knowledge growth was found to form a quadratic curve from third through fifth grades. School-level academic performance was positively associated with fitness knowledge. Sex was not associated with fitness knowledge or knowledge growth rate. Discussion: These findings contribute to the understanding of health-related fitness knowledge growth among elementary students.

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Xihe Zhu and Justin A. Haegele

The purpose of this study was to examine reactivity to accelerometer measurement in children with visual impairments (VI), their sighted siblings, and their parents. A sample of 66 participants (including 22 children with VI, 22 siblings, and 22 parents) completed a demographic survey and wore triaxial accelerometers for at least 4 consecutive days for 8 hr. An analysis of covariances with repeated measures was conducted, controlling for participant gender. Children with VI had 8.1% less moderate to vigorous physical activity time on Day 1 than Days 2–4 average. Their sighted siblings and parents had 7.8% and 7.1% more moderate to vigorous physical activity time on Day 1 than their Days 2–4 average, respectively. The reactivity percentage for parents and children without VI is consistent with existing literature. However, an inverse reactivity for children with VI was found, which is a unique contribution to the literature and will have implications for researchers using accelerometers for this population.

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Xihe Zhu, Senlin Chen, and James Parrott

This study examined adolescents’ interest in aerobic fitness testing and its relation to the test performances. Adolescents (N = 356) from three middle schools participated in the study. The participants took two aerobic fitness tests: the Progressive Aerobic Cardiovascular Endurance Run (PACER) and One-Mile Run (1MR) with a two-day interval, and completed two interest scales immediately after each test. Test performances, interest, and body mass index data were collected. Data were analyzed using descriptive statistics, multivariate analysis of variance/covariance, and hierarchical regression analyses. Student situational and personal interests were low-to-moderate overall in both aerobic fitness tests. Boys reported significantly higher situational interest than girls, but there was no gender difference in personal interest. Personal interest was a significant predictor for PACER (b=.27) and 1MR (b=-.37). The predictability of situational interest to testing performances varied between PACER and 1MR. PACER and 1MR might have rendered distinct motivational stimuli that led to the varied predicting power of situational interest.

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Summer Davis, Xihe Zhu, and Justin Haegele

Purpose: To examine differences in fitness test performance and the attributions made for the performances between high school students of different weight status. Methods: High school students (n = 185) completed the Progressive Aerobic Cardiovascular Endurance Run and the push-up fitness tests and then completed the modified Causal Dimension Scale to assess their attributions for their performances. Results: Students of a healthy weight performed higher than overweight/obese students on both fitness tests. There were no significant differences in attribution dimension scores for either test between healthy weight and overweight/obese students. Student performance played a significant role on the attribution dimension scores for both tests. Students primarily attributed their push-up and Progressive Aerobic Cardiovascular Endurance Run performance to ability. Conclusion: As student performance is significantly associated with attribution dimension scores, improving fitness test performance should subsequently foster adaptive attributions, creating a high expectancy for future success.

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Ang Chen, Bo Shen, and Xihe Zhu

A major portion of Catherine Ennis’s scholarship and career was devoted to developing culturally relevant physical education curricula for K–12 students. She held a strong conviction that the efficacy of a curriculum lies in its ability to enhance students’ knowledge and skills of most worth for their lives. The approach she adopted for curriculum development is an evidence-supported curriculum-design process through which a curriculum is put to the rigorous process of intervention research to determine its efficacy. In this article the authors reflect on the experiences they had with her in these curriculum interventions, share the ideas and practices in the research as Ennis envisioned, and discuss challenges and solutions in conducting large-scale, school-based curriculum intervention studies.

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Katherine Holland, Justin A. Haegele, and Xihe Zhu

The purpose of this study was to describe the reflections of adults with visual impairments about learning to run during K–12 physical education. An interpretative phenomenological analysis research approach was used, and eight adults (age 22–35 years) with visual impairments served as participants. Primary data sources were semistructured, audiotaped telephone interviews and reflective interview notes. Based on a thematic data analysis process, two themes were developed: (a) “I wouldn’t expect anything better from you”: running instruction in physical education and (b) “You look like the guy in the crosswalk signal”: making up for the shortcomings of physical education. The narratives portraying these themes highlight the lack of instruction that took place in physical education, and the fact that no running instruction occurred at all. These findings indicate that professionals working with individuals with visual impairments should use instructional strategies that will allow for maximum access to learning fundamental movement skills such as running.

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Justin A. Haegele, Xihe Zhu, Sean Healy, and Freda Patterson

Background: The purposes of this study were to examine the proportions of youth receiving special education services in the United States who individually and jointly met physical activity, screen time, and sleep duration guidelines, and to examine the impact of meeting none, one, two, and three of the guidelines on overweight and obesity. Methods: This cross-sectional analysis utilized data from the 2016 to 2017 National Survey for Children’s Health data set on 3582 youth aged 10–17 years who received special education services. The frequency of the participants’ compliance with the 24-hour movement guidelines and body weight status (based on the age- and sex-specific percentile cutoffs) were estimated. Meeting guidelines was defined as: 9–11 hours/night (5–13 y) or 8–10 hours/night (14–17 y) of sleep, ≤120 minutes per day of screen time, and ≥60 minutes per day of moderate to vigorous physical activity. A multinomial logistic regression analysis was conducted to estimate the impact of meeting none, one, two, or three guidelines on body weight status, adjusted for potential confounders. Results: Overall, 8.1% of youth met all three guidelines, 42.0% met two guidelines, 38.0% met one guideline, and 11.9% did not meet any guideline. Meeting all three guidelines was associated with an approximately 50% decreased likelihood of overweight than meeting no guideline, or sleep or screen time guidelines independently. Conclusions: This study extends the 24-hour movement framework to children receiving special education services and should prompt the continued study of its utility for understanding health disparities experienced by this population.

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T.N. Kirk, Justin A. Haegele, and Xihe Zhu

The purpose of this inquiry was to examine the relationship between barriers to physical activity, expectancy-value variables, and physical activity engagement among adults with visual impairments. Using a descriptive correlational approach, a sample of 214 adults with visual impairments (M age = 43.14, SD = 13.67) completed questionnaires pertaining to barriers to physical activity, expectancy-value beliefs about physical activity, and physical activity engagement. Data were analyzed via correlation and hierarchical regression. The final regression model explained 20.30% of variance in physical activity (p < .001). Intrinsic value (β = 0.26, p = .01) and expectancy beliefs (β = 0.33, p < .001) each emerged as significant predictors of physical activity engagement, which suggests that expectancy-value theory may have some utility for investigating the physical activity engagement of individuals with visual impairments. However, the lack of significant contribution of other variables such as attainment and utility values, as well as barriers factors, underscores the need for additional research in this area.