Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Service provided elementary school students with a program that included a noncompetitive physical activity component: circuit training that combined cardiovascular, strength, and flexibility activities without requiring high skill levels. The intent was to improve fitness without focusing on body mass index as an indicator of fitness. Youths (111) in grades 3–5 underwent President's Council on Fitness, Sports, and Nutrition testing at baseline and program completion. Significant improvements were observed in average fitness measures among youths who participated in the circuit training. Extension professionals looking for new tools to use with school-based physical activity programs may consider circuit training as a noncompetitive means of improving youth physical fitness and fitness measures as more appropriate outcome indicators.
Phelps, J., Smith, A., Parker, S., & Hermann, J. (2016). New Approach to School Health Initiatives: Using Fitness Measures Instead of Body Mass Index to Evaluate Outcomes. Journal of Extension, 54(4), Article 5. https://tigerprints.clemson.edu/joe/vol54/iss4/5