Physical Education Courses and Classes Overview

Courses in physical education are typically offered as part of a degree program culminating in a degree, which may qualify graduates to work as physical education teachers at the elementary and secondary level. Read on to find out more information for potential physical education students.

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Essential Information

Physical education courses are typically available through bachelor's and master's degree programs in elementary and secondary physical education. Through these courses, prospective teachers gain the experience necessary to plan a physical education program, analyze progress and improve student fitness.

Physical education classes combine instruction in methods of elementary and secondary teaching with courses in exercise methods, athletic training and nutrition. Additional certification courses and professional credential exams may also be required; teaching certification requirements vary by state.

Here are common concepts explored in physical education courses:

  • Teaching health
  • Evaluation techniques
  • Analysis of motor skills
  • Net games
  • Field games
  • School health programs

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  • Kinesiology and Exercise Science
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List of Physical Education Classes

Fitness Through Movement Course

This introductory course familiarizes students with the way people move to condition and maintain their bodies. Although this course occasionally touches on topics such as nutrition, students typically focus on the types of fitness that can help with weight control, toning and stress management. They learn how to develop a physical education curriculum that encourages healthy living and fitness. Often, students also learn ways to increase physical activity levels.

Elementary Physical Education Course

In this course, prospective teachers learn methods for helping elementary students improve their social skills, fitness levels and motor skills through physical education. They learn games that get students to move and interact. Typically, those enrolled in this course also learn how to test their students' physical fitness and condition their bodies to keep them healthy. Often, this course includes techniques for teaching a gym class and discusses state and federal physical education requirements.

Methods for Teaching High School Physical Education Course

In this intermediate physical education class, prospective teachers learn how to get high school-aged students interested in physical education. The course typically includes an overview of procedures used to involve students and help them meet their cardiovascular and fitness requirements. Usually, this course is completed in lecture format, and class members gain hands-on experience working and observing at a school on their own time.

Water Fitness Course

Physical education courses in aquatics provide the skills to teach elementary or secondary students to swim; correct breathing and strokes are emphasized. More advanced classes cover how to improve students' speeds and test their swimming techniques. Diving instruction for competitive swimming purposes is also discussed. Prospective teachers must practice maintaining pool safety and upkeep.

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