A Study of the Physical Fitness, Perceived Value of Physical Education, and Generic Skills of Secondary School Students
Keywords:Active lifestyle, Quality life, Motivation, School children
LANGUAGE NOTE | Document text in English; abstract also in Chinese.
Recent research findings suggested a gradual decline of physical fitness in Hong Kong school children over the past 10 years despite efforts by the Hong Kong SAR Government to promote the development of sports culture in the territory. Since cardiovascular heart disease (CHD) is the number 2 killer in Hong Kong and Hong Kong children were developing CHD risk factors prematurely, it was highly desirable to design and implement primary prevention programmes for this special population. The present study intended to provide better understanding of the physical fitness (PF), the perceived value of physical education (PV) and the contribution of physical education (PE) in the development of generic skills (GS) of secondary school students in Hong Kong. Subjects were 3,067 students from 26 schools selected by proportional stratification based on the school type and region. They were asked to perform a physical fitness test battery, and respond to two questionnaires on perceived value of PE and contribution of PE on development of generic skills. Results indicated that age was a factor: the younger group (12-14 years) scored better than the older group (15-18 years) in PV and GS. Older female subjects scored the highest in PF and also the lowest in PV, suggesting that they were fit but not because they perceived value of PE. Correlations between the three factors were significant (p<0.05) except in the older male group. The lowest PF score was also found in the younger male group. It was concluded that in order to facilitate the development of sports culture among school children, further studies would be desirable to better understand the phenomena that affect children and adolescents, perception of the value of PE in school and their motives and personal meaning for participation in physical activity.
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