Main Article Content
Triathlon, Physical Activity Enjoyment Scale, Health and Physical Education, PACES
Introduction: The significance of triathlon is reflected in the teaching and development of motor, social and emotional skills. Because triathlon has great educational potential, this case study sought to explore whether a modified Physical Activity Enjoyment Scale (PACES) survey can be used as a suitable measure of enjoyment of physical activity in elementary school children when applied to a sports-specific task such as triathlon.
Methods: The sample consisted of 12 female elementary school students (10.3 ± 1.3 years) from an inner-city high school. A modified triathlon program was delivered for one hour per week over a four-week duration with a modified PACES survey distributed each week. Survey responses were coded and then averaged over the four-week duration with the children’s responses subsequently analyzed using a Wilcoxon Signed Ranks Test to examine differences in the coded characteristic response scores of the survey. Further comparisons were made using a Student’s t-test and a coefficient of variation (CV).
Results: A greater sense of pleasure and fun was reported by the participants at the conclusion of the four-week triathlon program while there was no change in the children’s sense of excitement (p < 0.5). Characteristic responses to ‘neutral’ decreased with a simultaneous increase in the ‘slightly enjoyed’ response when viewed over the four-week duration of the program (p <0.001)
Conclusions: This PACES case study was designed as a feasible, simple, and innovative approach to monitor enjoyment levels in elementary school children who participated in a triathlon program. Overall, the positive enjoyment reported from this simple, low-cost intervention could be used to inform the development of future sport-specific elementary school programs.
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