Fitness education is, “A physical education teaching approach that focuses on knowledge and understanding of physical fitness and wellness” (Strand, Scantling and Johnson 360). As a student studying to be a physical education teacher I am greatly concerned that children are not getting enough exercise and making poor choices regarding nutrients. Physical fitness is broken down into five fitness components: body composition, cardiovascular fitness, flexibility, muscular endurance and muscular strength. I will also talk about how nutrition plays a strong role in fitness education and how it applies to the five components of physical fitness.
Body composition is, “the percentage of body fat a person possesses” (Strand, Scantling and Johnson 90). This means that body composition is determined by how much of your body comprised of fat. There are many ways to assess body composition, a few of them are: hydrostatic weighing, dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry and skinfold fat thickness. Hydrostatic weighing is when a person is weighed under water to find their volume which is then divided by their mass to determine their densitometry. Dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry uses X-ray technology to estimate the density of different types of tissues in a person’s body. The skinfold fat thickness technique measures the thickness of a fold of skin on a person’s body to estimate body composition (Kenney, Wilmore and Costill 359-360). Each of these methods have their pros and their cons. The skinfold fat thickness technique is inexpensive and does not need to be done in a lab; however it is not as accurate as hydrostatic weighing or dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry.
Cardiovascular fitness is, “the ability of the heart, lungs, and arteries to supply fresh oxygenated blood to the muscles of the body” (Strand, Scantling and Johnson 90). The cardiovascular system includes the heart and all of the blood vessels including the blood vessels leading to the lungs, brain, kidneys and all other tissues. Many cardiovascular adaptations occur as a result of exercise, like hearts size, stroke volume, heart rate, cardiac output, blood flow and more. As cardiovascular fitness increases (through training) the body becomes more efficient in transporting oxygen from the lungs to the muscles, allowing for longer and more intense training (Strand, Scantling and Johnson 112-114). This means that activities that may tire someone with low cardiovascular fitness will become easier after adequate training due to the adaptations that the cardiovascular system developed from the exercise training.
Flexibility is, “the range of motion available at a joint or joints” (Strand, Scantling and Johnson 90). This is clearly an extremely important part of fitness in a sense that without flexibility a person cannot function without getting injured. According to Strand, Scantling and Johnson, “fit people possess full range of motion around their joints and are able to participate in a wide range...