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FITNESSGRAM 2012-2013: Winter Training. Department of Physical Education, Health and Athletics SDUSD. What is the FITNESSGRAM?. Health-related fitness assessment Establishes fitness levels (Healthy Fitness Zones) needed to maintain health and avoid preventable diseases

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Fitnessgram 2012 2013 winter training

FITNESSGRAM 2012-2013: Winter Training

Department of Physical Education, Health and Athletics


What is the fitnessgram
What is the FITNESSGRAM?

  • Health-related fitness assessment

  • Establishes fitness levels (Healthy Fitness Zones) needed to maintain health and avoid preventable diseases

  • A battery of 6 tests assesses 5 health-related components of physical fitness

    • Cardiovascular fitness

    • Muscular strength

    • Muscular endurance

    • Flexibility

    • Body composition

What has changed
What has changed?

  • In 2011, the CA State Board of Education adopted new Healthy Fitness Zones (HFZs) for Body Mass Index and Aerobic Capacity for the spring testing window

    • Represents a paradigm shift away from performance-based measures to a more accurate prediction of system function and efficiency

    • Provides more specific information about potential health risks and allows for more prescriptive feedback messages to students and parents

Why the changes
Why the changes?

  • Data driven-change

    • Aerobic Capacity

      • Excessively high passing rates for young girls

      • Classification disagreement between PACER and One-Mile Run

    • Body Composition

      • Standards for very young children did not discriminate adequately

      • Classification disagreement between % Body Fat and BMI values

      • Much more data for children is now available upon which to base HFZ standards

What does the research say
What does the research say?

  • Body Composition

    • New HFZs reflect the recent work of the FITNESSGRAM Scientific Advisory Board that looked at BMI and the level of blood test indicators (i.e., HDL/LDL cholesterol and triglycerides) associated with preventable diseases

    • New HFZs consider age and gender to measure BMI and reflect the natural developmental trends for boys to gain muscle and girls to gain fat through adolescence, as well as health risks

  • Aerobic Capacity

    • New HFZs reflect VO2max values that define potential risk for metabolic syndrome and take into account normal changes in growth and maturation

    • New HFZs predict VO2max using BMI, and are a better indicator of the function and efficiency of the cardio-respiratory system

How do the changes impact teachers
How do the changes impact teachers?

Test administration protocol does not change

Some teachers feel the new HFZs are unfair and punitive for students with a high BMI

Teachers are used to performance-based measures in physical education (e.g., number of reps, motor skill form, distance run, weight lifted, etc.)

Teachers can no longer tell students the number of PACER laps or mile time they need to achieve to be in the HFZ for aerobic capacity

Teachers can no longer use a performance-based perspective or the new HFZs will appear punitive

Changes will show up in reporting student results

What is new for body composition
What is NEW for body composition?

  • Healthy Fitness Zones (HFZs) vary by age and gender

    • Previously % body fat was a consistent cut off based on gender (25% for boys, 32% for girls)

    • New standards reflect % body fat that defines risk for metabolic syndrome

  • There are now 4 Classification Zones

    • Very Lean

    • Healthy Fitness Zone

    • Needs Improvement – Some Risk

    • Needs Improvement – High Risk

  • This change will affect all grade levels and genders

Body composition assessment options
Body Composition Assessment Options

  • Skinfold calipers - inexpensive, accurate if the user has been trained

    • Bioelectrical impedance – more accurate if 4 contact points, less if only 2 contact points

    • A protocol must be followed:

      • Can’t eat or drink 30 minutes prior to the test

      • Must urinate 30 minutes prior to the test

      • Girls cannot be on their period

  • Infrared - expensive, easy to use, 3-5% error

What is new for aerobic capacity
What is NEW for aerobic capacity?

  • Output is now expressed as Aerobic Capacity (VO2max) vs. PACER laps or One-Mile Run time

  • Height and weight must be collected for ALL students in order to calculate VO2max

  • Values for boys increase with age while the values for girls decrease

  • There are now 3 Classification Zones

    • Healthy Fitness Zone

    • Needs Improvement – Some Risk

    • Needs Improvement – High Risk

  • Fewer young girls, more young boys and fewer older boys will achieve the new HFZ

  • What is metabolic syndrome
    What is metabolic syndrome?

    • Metabolic syndrome is considered as a group of risk factors that collectively promote the development of cardiovascular disease and increases the risk of diabetes

    • Three of the following five risk factors must be present:

      • High blood pressure

      • High fasting glucose

      • High waist circumference

      • High triglycerides

      • Low HDL cholesterol

    What is aerobic capacity
    What is aerobic capacity?

    Body’s ability to take in, transport and convert oxygen to energy during exercise

    How does fitnessgram measure aerobic capacity
    How does FITNESSGRAM measure aerobic capacity?

    • The gold standard measure of aerobic capacity is VO2max

    What is vo 2 max
    What is VO2max?

    VO2max is the maximum rate that your body can take in, transport, and use oxygen during incremental exercise

    V is for volume or how much per unit of time

    O2 is for oxygen; we breathe it in

    VO2max is also known as maximal oxygen consumption, maximal oxygen uptake, peak oxygen uptake or aerobic capacity

    Why is aerobic capacity important
    Why is aerobic capacity important?

    What benefits will your students experience by improving their aerobic capacity? Turn and talk to a partner.

    Step 1 determine student body mass index bmi
    Step 1: Determine student Body Mass Index (BMI)

    Step 2 determine appropriate aerobic capacity vo 2 max
    Step 2: Determine Appropriate Aerobic Capacity (VO2max)

    Or use a formula to calculate vo 2 max
    OR…Use a Formula to Calculate VO2max

    • Use this online spreadsheet to enter a student’s PACER lap count or one mile-run time along with height and weight to determine the student’s aerobic capacity (VO2max) and BMI scores. It will perform the necessary calculations for both aerobic capacity and BMI.


    Step 3 select the appropriate test
    Step 3: Select the appropriate test…

    • Mile Run Test

      • Requires student age, gender, height, weight, mile time

      • VO2max will not be estimated if time exceeds 13 min.

    • PACER Test

      • Requires student age, gender, height, weight, PACER to one mile conversion time

      • VO2max will not be estimated if PACER to one mile conversion time exceeds 13 min.

    • Walk Test

      • Only for students 13 and older

      • Requires age, gender, height, weight, one-mile walk time, one minute heart rate at end of walk

    Strategies for implementing change
    Strategies for Implementing Change

    • Make the paradigm shift as a teacher – the expectations for attaining the new HFZs are different!

      • Motivation for students on the aerobic capacity tests cannot be based on “how much” they have to do

      • Students should be instructed to “do their best”

    • Use a thoughtful, emotionally-sensitive approach to explain the new HFZs

    • Stress to students the effects of higher BMI upon the function and efficiency of the cardiorespiratory system

    • Give students adequate time to prepare for all of the tests

    • Give high school students an opportunity to try ALL 3 aerobic capacity tests and to select their test preference

    Strategies for implementing change cont d
    Strategies for Implementing Change (cont’d.)

    Allow students with a higher BMI the chance to perform the Walk Test; there is some evidence that this is a better measure of AC for those with a higher BMI

    Explain aerobic metabolism, aerobic capacity, and the effects of higher BMI on the cardiorespiratory system

    Provide support such as opportunities to practice beyond the school day, pre-testing in the fall, exercise logs, accountability for exercising over school breaks, development of fitness plans, goal-setting instruction, fitness/wellness links on teacher’s website, etc.

    Disseminate updated information to parents and administrators

    Ensuring a valid test
    Ensuring a Valid Test

    • Teachers must administer the FITNESSGRAM subtests with fidelity, to ensure reliable and valid results

      • A high school student tested in San Jose must be tested in the exact same way as a student in San Diego

    • Certificated teachers are the only ones who may conduct the test or enter data, never coaches, parents or volunteers

    • Students should never test other students during the actual test

    • The cadence CDs should always be used for the PACER, curl-up and push-up tests

    Sdusd testing window
    SDUSD Testing Window

    • Spring: February 25th to March 22nd

      • 5th, 7th, 9th – 12th graders

    • New FITNESSGRAM kits will be supplied to every elementary and middle school site this spring

    • High schools received kits in the fall

    Sdusd reporting
    SDUSD Reporting

    • Pass/fail scores will still appear in Data Director since they are reported cumulatively

    • The new classification zones for body composition and aerobic capacity will only appear in the parent letter

    Sdusd fitnessgram support

    Physical Education, Health and Athletics Department

    Fitnessgram resources
    FITNESSGRAM Resources

    • Training Videos


        • 3-6 minute training videos for ALL 13 FITNESSGRAM Tests

    • California Department of Education


        • Ed Code, California Resources, Coordinator Manual

    • Cooper Institute


        • Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

    • Presidential Youth Fitness


        • Tools such as VO2max calculator

    • Human Kinetics


        • Order Training Manuals, Cadence CDs and Equipment