Children's physical activity and environmental influences during elementary school physical education

Bik Chu Chow, Thomas L. McKenzie, Lobo H T Louie

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

50 Citations (Scopus)


Physical activity (PA) during physical education is important for health purposes and for developing physical fitness and movement skills. To examine PA levels and how PA was influenced by environmental, and instructor-related characteristics, we assessed children's activity during 368 lessons taught by 105 physical education specialists in 42 randomly selected schools in Hong Kong. Trained observers used SOFIT in randomly selected classes, grades 4-6, during three climatic seasons. Results indicated, children's PA levels met the U.S. Healthy People 2010 objective of 50% engagement time and were higher than comparable U.S. populations. Multiple regression analyses revealed that temperature teacher behavior, and two lesson characteristics (subject matter and mode of delivery) were significantly associated with the PA levels. Most of these factors are modifiable, and changes could improve the quantity and intensity of children's PA.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)38-50
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Teaching in Physical Education
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2008

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation
  • Education

User-Defined Keywords

  • Direct observation
  • Exercise
  • Fitness
  • Teaching


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