History of PE
Point of Emphasis
 This
is the only course that will address
PE history, a topic included on the
Praxis II exam.
Q&A
 What
can you tell me about the
history of physical education?
Background? Influences (Sociocultural?)
 Current
Physical Education is the
latest rendition of all the changes
that have taken place over time.
 Why
is this important?
 A: Throughout their history in the U.S., k-12 physical
education programs have tended to reflect larger patterns in
American culture, people’s needs and choices regarding
physical activity, and trends in the educational system. As
you will see, the goals, content, and instruction in physical
education have evolved and will continue to grow in ways that
call for new approaches.
Overview of History

Colonial Period (late 1700’s to mid 1800’s)




Late 19th Century


Physical training, emergence of sport
Transitional Period (1900-1917)



No formalized physical education
Fitness through survival, hunting, work, little
leisure time
Emergence of gymnastic systems
Formalized curriculum
Accepted methodology
Acceptance (1917-1930)

Accepted into the mainstream school curriculum
Late 1700’s, Early 1800’s
Late 1700’s – PE had a military flavor
 1823 Freidrich Ludwig Jahn’s “Turnverein”
concepts introduced to the U.S.
 Turnverein – Social Gymnastics also known as
German Gymnastics
 German System used heavy gymnastics “violent
and exhausting in nature”

German Turnverein
The Battle for System Dominance !

German System
 Swedish System
 Beecher System
 Hitchcock System
 Sargent System
1856 Catherine Beecher
 Mother
of American PE
 1852 founded the American Women’s
Education Association
 1856 - Women’s physical training –
published a manual of physiology and
calisthenics
 Calisthenics
 Light exercises for health and beauty
Typical 1800’s gymnasium
MUSCULAR CHRISTIANITY
 Puritan
ethic was a prominent influence on
how PE was viewed.
 Conflict between religion and the body
 MC – a philosophy that made exercise and
fitness compatible with the tenets of the
faith.
PRIOR TO 1885 PHYSICAL
EDUCATION (in the broad sense)
DID NOT EXIST AS FORMAL FIELD
OF EDUCATION!!!!
1885

Adelphi Conference (1885) – Participants
pledge to improve the profession and increase
its standing. The Association for the
Advancement of Physical Education is formed
(forerunner of AAHPERD).
 Names for PE: Gymnastics, physical
training, sport, physical education
Early 1900’s
 Decline
of religious opposition
 Immigration – introduced new activities
 Urbanization, transportation, and war
dispersed activities
 Growth of leisure time
 Intercollegiate athletic conferences
 Curb
abuses like betting (1st one - Big Ten)
 Comprehensive
 John
Education
Dewey; progressive education
Early 1900’s
 Still
emphasis
on military-like
physical training
exercises (i.e.
calisthenics)
1918
Posture Exercises
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PqlZgMkaC5A
Late 1800’s, Early 1900’s
 Noticeable
shift
 “PE”
began diversifying its content to
include sports
 Still included militaristic, calisthenics like
exercises but emphasis was waning

Culture of Physical Training gave way to
Physical Education
 Formalized
PE curriculum began
developing
 Accepted methodology
Formal Recognition
 Umbrella
term – Physical Education
 Included
dance, health education,
intramurals, camping, playgrounds,
recreation, outdoor education,
YMCA/YWCA.
 NEA
officially recognizes physical
education as curricular field.
Q&A

http://inventors.about.com/library/inventors/blsports.htm
What sports were invented in the US? Typically
during the late 1800’s & early 1900’s but also into
today? Some have their roots in sports from abroad.
 Lacrosse (<1630, Native Americans)
 Baseball/Softball (Cartwright, ~1845, NYC)
 Football (Camp, ~1875, New Haven CT)
 Basketball (Naismth, 1891, Springfield, MA)
 Volleyball (Morgan, 1895, Holyoke MA)
 Mountain Biking (Californnia)
 Pickleball (Bell and Pritchard, 1965, WA state)
La-crosse
Basketball History
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Io35RCBMQJw
1909
1920’s – 30’s
 PE
became an accepted subject.
 States passed mandatory PE laws
 Teacher education developed
 Graduate study began
 Sport continued to dominate American pop
culture
1940’s
 Half
of WWII military recruits were unfit
for duty; concern for fitness
 Adapted PE took off due to wounded vets
Sport Takes Over
Biggest influence of the 1900’s was
sport! Now many programs began to
include Basketball, Football,
Baseball, Field Hockey, Swimming,
Racket Sports, and some “Outing
Activities”
1950’s

Eisenhower formed the President's Council
on Youth Fitness
 Article portrayed American kids as weak.
60% failed fitness test compared to 6% of
European kids
 Kennedy spoke openly about the need to
improve their fitness levels, including writing
an article in Sports Illustrated entitled "The
Soft American"
Late 20th Century

Recreation, sport and fitness still the
main focus.
 Concerns that not all students needs
being met
 Developed dance further, introduced
alternative education.
 Fitness boomed with running, aerobics
(Cooper), and rope jumping
Kenneth Cooper
 “Father
of the Modern Fitness Movement”
 Worked with NASA to help create
astronaut conditioning program
 Developed the 12-minute and 1.5-mile
fitness tests & the Aerobics Point System
 Publication of Aerobics in 1960’s
 Disease prevention thru aerobic exercise
 Cooper Institute (developed Fitnessgram)
http://www.cooperaerobics.com/default.aspx
Late 20th Century

Title IX (1972) began addressing
gender inequity
Fitness Craze (80’s)
 Increase
in emphasis
 Health/looks
 Have’s
and have not's
Trim/athletic
 Obese/SES

Curriculum Additions to PE

Adventure/Cooperative (late 60’s)






Outward bound, project adventure, team challenge
Movement Education (70’s)
Teaching games for understanding-tactical (1986)
Hellison’s model of social responsibility (1995)
Sport education (1994)
Wellness/fitness (1990’s)


Holistic/proactive (body, mind, spirit)
Lifetime activity
Today
 Sub-disciplines
 Exercise
physiology
 Biomechanics
 Motor learning
 Sport psychology
 Sport history/philosophy
Subdisciplines
 Anatomy
 The
physical
structure of
an animal
Subdisciplines
 Kinesiology
 Study
of
movement
(human in our
case)
Subdisciplines
 Biomechanics
 Study
of the
human body as a
mechanical
system, utilizes
principles drawn
from physics.
 No specific
course,
incorporated
throughout
Subdisciplines
 Physiology
 Functions
and
activities of living
organisms,
including all
physical and
chemical
processes.
Subdisciplines
 Exercise
physiology
 Study
of bodily
systems and their
reactions to
stress of
exercise.
Subdiscplines

Motor Learning



Focuses on how motor
skills are learned.
Areas: motor learning,
control, development
Categories



Initial
Elementary
Mature
Subdisciplines
 Sport
Psychology
 Study
of sport and
psychological
issues in sport
 Intervention
examples:
Relaxation, cue
control, mental
imaging, coping,
desensitization
Kinesiology
 Umbrella
term for
the total discipline
of sport and
exercise.
Today-“New PE”
 Not
a specific program or curriculum but a
philosophy of being more inclusive and
lifetime oriented. Began in 90’s and is
considered the norm today.
 Covered
in more depth later
Today: Down Sides
 Reduction
of time allotted PE
 Disparities in instruction
 Roll
out the ball “gym teachers”
 Marginalization
 NCLB
Today: Positive Side
 Increasing
fitness and wellness focus
 More lifetime activities; inclusivity
 Improved status
 Engine for reduction in obesity and
diabetes
 Greater recognition of the importance of
physical activity in many facets of life
Leaders in the Field

George Graham,
PSU


PECentral
Children Moving
Many others too

Judy Rink, USC


Standards
South Carolina
Physical Education
Assessment
Program (SCPEAP)
Depends on You
Webquest HW
 Due
Download

History of PE