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Physical Literacy

Updated: Oct 4


What is Youth physical literacy?

"Physical literacy is the motivation, confidence, physical competence, knowledge, and understanding to value and take responsibility for engagement in physical activities for life." - The International Physical Literacy Association, May 2014


The elements of physical literacy

Motivation & Confidence (Affective): Motivation and confidence refers to an individual’s enthusiasm for, enjoyment of, and self-assurance in adopting physical activity as an integral part of life.


Physical Competence (Physical): Physical competence refers to an individual’s ability to develop movement skills and patterns, and the capacity to experience a variety of movement intensities and durations. Enhanced physical competence enables an individual to participate in a wide range of physical activities and settings.www.uhealth.ca


Knowledge & Understanding (Cognitive): Knowledge and understanding includes the ability to identify and express the essential qualities that influence movement, understand the health benefits of an active lifestyle, and appreciate appropriate safety features associated with physical activity in a variety of settings and physical environments.


Engagement in Physical Activities for Life (Behavioral): Engagement in physical activities for life refers to an individual taking personal responsibility for physical literacy by freely choosing to be active on a regular basis. This involves prioritizing and sustaining involvement in a range of meaningful and personally challenging activities, as an integral part of one’s lifestyle. From physicalliteracy.ca



Resistance Training for Children and Adolescents

Positive outcomes of improved strength in youth continue to be acknowledged, including improvements in health, fitness, rehabilitation of injuries, injury reduction, and physical literacy.


Resistance training is not limited to lifting weights but includes a wide array of body weight movements that can be implemented at young ages to improve declining measures of muscular fitness among children and adolescents.


Scientific research supports a wide acceptance that children and adolescents can gain strength with resistance training with low injury rates if the activities are performed with an emphasis on proper technique and are well supervised.


Gains in childhood strength are primarily attributed to the neurologic mechanism of increases in motor neuron recruitment, allowing for increases in strength without resultant muscle hypertrophy.

It is important to incorporate resistance training into physical education classes and youth sport programs to increase muscular strength, reduce the risk of overuse injuries, and spark an ongoing interest in this type of exercise. FROM THE AMERICAN ACADEMY OF PEDIATRICS CLINICAL REPORT - JUNE 2020

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