MCHbest. NPM 8: Physical Activity
Strategy. Physical Education Enhancement
Approach. Expand and strengthen physical education (PE) efforts in school settings.
Overview. Research indicates physical education enhancements that increase the time children are participating in PE and reduce the time they are sedentary can increase physical activity levels in elementary and middle school children. Enhancements can include lengthening PE lessons, adding in more PE classes to the schedule, or improving PE curricula or PE teacher training.1, 2
Evidence. Emerging. Initial research showed positive results for PE enhancements, but further research is needed to confirm effects. This strategy has been tested more than once and results trend positive overall. Access the peer-reviewed evidence through the MCH Digital Library. (Read more about understanding evidence ratings).
Target Audience. Schools: children and adolescent,; physical education teachers.
Outcome. Increase in overall physical activity in children and adolescents. For detailed outcomes related to each study supporting this strategy, click on the peer-reviewed evidence link above and read the “Intervention Results” for each study.
Examples from the Field. Access descriptions of ESMs that use this strategy directly or intervention components that aligns with this strategy. You can use these ESMs to see how other Title V agencies are addressing the NPM.
Sample ESMs. Using the approach “Expand and strengthen physical education (PE) efforts in school settings,” here are sample ESMs you can use to model for your own measures using the Results-Based Accountability framework (for suggestions on how to develop programs to support this strategy, see The Role of Title V in Adapting Strategies):
Note. ESMs become stronger as they move from measuring quantity to measuring quality (moving from Quadrants 1 and 3, respectively, to Quadrants 2 and 4) and from measuring effort to measuring effect (moving from Quadrants 1 and 2, respectively, to Quadrants 3 and 4).
1 Cronholm F, Rosengren BE, Karlsson C, Karlsson MK. A comparative study found that a seven-year school-based exercise programme increased physical activity levels in both sexes. Acta Paediatrica. 2018 Apr;107(4):701-707.
2 Palmer SE, Bycura DK, Warren M. A physical education intervention effects on correlates of physical activity and motivation. Health Promotion and Practice. 2018 May;19(3):455-464.