Study: Gym teachers have lasting influence

Physical education class
Physical education class
Published: Sep. 11, 2023 at 6:02 AM CDT
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GREEN BAY, Wis. (WBAY) - Your child’s gym teacher may be more of an influence than you think.

A new study says physical education teachers greatly influence how a student feels about being active later in life.

This study from the University of Kansas says as students get older their physical activity drops, so high school can be the last chance to encourage kids to have a healthy lifestyle beyond grade school.

Researchers say a teacher should focus on giving a positive, fun experience in P.E. class instead of having students compete.

It’s about shaping physical activity around what the student wants and needs. Students in the study said they prefer a variety of activities to an overemphasis on certain sports.

The most impactful part of the study, students reported the influence the teacher had on their experience. This may all seem pretty standard, but recent research shows mixed results of how kids look at physical activity later in life. This hones down on the influence a P.E. teacher has.