A Meta-analysis of Children's Activity During Physical Education Lessons
Objective: In this meta-analysis, we sought to compare accelerometry-measured physical activity and sedentary time (ST) among elementary school students during physical education (PE) lessons taught by generalist and specialist teachers. Methods: We searched 7 databases for peer-reviewed, English-language, original research that met the inclusion criteria. The percentage of PE lesson spent in moderate-to vigorous-intensity physical activity (MVPA) and ST was synthesized across the 2 types of teachers. Studies that provided percentage of PE class spent in MVPA/ST, a standard deviation, and sample size were pooled for meta-analysis. Results: Overall, 42 studies were included in this review. On average, children engaged in MVPA for 33.0% of their PE classes, and were sedentary for 35.9% of their PE classes. Subgroup analyses found that children spent an average of 33.8% of their PE class time in MVPA when taught by a specialist, and 29.9% of their PE class time in MVPA when a generalist was responsible for instruction. Similarly, children spent 34.2% of PE class time in ST under the instruction of a specialist, and 40.9% of PE class time when taught by a generalist teacher. Conclusion: Regardless of teacher specialization, physical activity levels during PE class at the elementary school level are low.
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Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: July 1, 2020
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