The Components of Physical Fitness
The Connecticut Physical Fitness Assessment is given annually to all students in grades 4, 6, 8, and 10. It consists of the four components of fitness. This pamphlet is to inform parents and guardians about the importance of physical fitness.
Test: Back-Saver Sit and Reach
Objective and Rationale: The objective of this test is to reach a specified distance on the right and left sides. It measures flexibility of the lower back and hamstrings. Proper hamstring flexibility helps avoid lower back pain.
➜ The modified sit and reach is a good exercise as well as a test.
➜ Remember that general stretching of major muscle groups to develop flexibility involves a slow and controlled motion. Hold a stretch for 10 to 30 seconds.
➜ Hold the body or limbs in a position that elongates the muscles to a point where you feel stretching – not pain.
Abdominal Strength and Endurance
Objective and Rationale: The objective of this test is to complete as many partial curl-ups as possible at a rhythmic pace. Abdominal fitness is important to good health because low levels are associated with bad posture and lower back pain.
➜ The partial curl-up is a good exercise as well as a test. Learning to pace oneself and controlling the movement by engaging the muscles is essential.
Upper Body Strength and Endurance
Test: 90° Push-up
Objective and Rationale: The objective of this test is to complete as many right angle push-ups as possible at a rhythmic pace. Upper body muscle fitness is required in order to perform daily living and recreational activities with vigor and undue fatigue.
➜ The right angle push-up is a good exercise as well as a test.
➜ The following activities are some ways to increase upper body strength:
Push-up position-raise hand to wave-switch hands
Push-up position- walk on hands and feet
Age appropriate resistance training
Test: One-Mile Run/Walk
Objective and Rationale: The objective of the test is to measure cardiorespiratory or aerobic endurance. The one-mile run/walk is a good indicator of the ability of the circulatory and respiratory systems to supply oxygen to functioning muscles.
➜ Accumulate at least 30 min. of moderate to vigorous physical activity daily.
➜ Practice pacing – not racing.
➜ Participate in activities which feature constant movement for an extended period of time. The following are some examples of aerobic exercises which increase your heart rate:
walk briskly hiking bicycling swimming
rope jumping jogging dancing cross country skiing
Connecticut State Department of Education The “Second Generation” Connecticut Physical Fitness Assessment