How to delay ageing!

As I get older and start getting little aches and pains from the activities that I love to do, I sometimes wonder if I’m the only one going through this. I know, though, it is probably happening to others and will probably, eventually, happen to my students. How do I help them from getting injured more as they age? How to delay ageing for the young is a tough concept to get across? How do I teach 13 to 18 year olds that they must do the little things to keep injury free?

I remember as I was training for my Ironman triathlon that I was active 7 days a week. There were easy days and hard days. But there was daily exercise. I put in  about 25 hours per week in training. I obviously trained in the swim, bike, and run. That was not it though. I was doing weight training, yoga, plyometrics, and core specific exercises. During this period I was pretty much injury free. If something did come up it was easy to take care of. It’s like if you treat your body right your body treats you right.


In my classes I talk about three main parts of a workout:
1. Warm-up
2. Main activity
3. Cool down

I give several examples of each and we practice them in class on a daily basis.

We also learn about the health-related and skill-related components of fitness along with the principles of training and the F.I.T.T. principle. This is so much more information than what I came out of high school with. I didn’t learn these things until college and couple of them just in the last 5 years.

I guess I need to make it relevant. That is the challenge! Taking a theory and putting it into practice with understanding is hard to do. This year I plan on giving my students a lot more flexibility on how they show what they have learned. This could be a big key. Some students may want to do an essay, others a video, still others a rap song. I need to let the students show me that they understand the concepts and not necessarily care how they do it.

It is well known that the CDC recommends that people their age get moderate to vigorous activity an hour every day. As you get older the recommendation goes down. I wonder if it really should. I say this because I know if I don’t do the little things (i.e. planks, push-up, stretching)  daily my body hurts.

These young students who are nearly indestructible and who heal quickly do not understand what we active adults go through. One idea that pops into my head is bringing in adults who exercise and let them tell about how their body works differently now than when they were younger.

Do you exercise? Does your body hurt a little more than it used to? Share your story. How do you teach this to your students? When you share and comment that is when the real learning takes place.

Physical Education – Where Mind and Body Come Together!


What’s Your Reason?

WhyI wonder sometimes, why people do what they do.
What are the motives of people? Do they do things that make them happy or other people happy. Maybe a reason is to make the world a better place. I truly believe that people as a whole want to be helpful and see others succeed. We as teachers have a special calling on our lives to influence the children of our towns, states, nation, and the world. We have a chance to build our nation from the ground up. We get to teach concepts like teamwork, sportsmanship, honor, loyalty, and integrity. What an amazing life we get to live!

Are people really doing what they were made to do?
However, there are people in career choices that they may not have wanted to make. They may have just fallen into what they are doing. But, I am sure that here are those who fell into careers that they didn’t really choose that are making huge impacts on the world. I know for instance that I didn’t start out wanting to be a physical educator. My dream was to be a professional runner until I was no longer able to compete then I wanted to be a sports podiatrist.

Unfortunately and fortunately for me things didn’t really turn out as I had dreamed. You see I became physical education teacher. I’m not mad don’t get me wrong. I love what I do! But, there are people in our profession who are just kinda stuck and can’t find the motivation to get out or get better.

What’s the reason for what they do?
I have a lot of friends who got into physical education for the coaching aspect of being in a school. They were great athletes in high school and college, but once their time was over they didn’t want to be out of the atmosphere of athletics. Now I’m not saying that all coaches are in the school setting for this reason. I my self have even coached in the past and am in the middle of starting the athletics programs at the high school where I currently teach. Athletics and coaches supply experiences for students that can’t be gained anywhere else. Learning experiences that I think all people should go through.

Let’s take a look at our profession, physical education.
We have a lot to do here to bring our profession to where it needs to be. We need to advocate to our students, parents, teachers, administrators, and community about the positive impact we can have on all parts of a students life and education. We need to be working with doctors, nutritionists, health and fitness organizations, and corporations to see exactly what we need to do to prepare our students to be ready for work and life.

We also need to make sure ALL physical educators are doing the best that they can no matter why they are in the profession. Whether they chose it or just kinda fell into it like I did. We need to find a way to reach all physical educators with the proper professional development so that students can receive the education that they deserve. We need to show that rolling out the ball is no longer acceptable and that with a little hard work high quality physical education can be achieved.

Why do people decide to become physical educators?
Physical educators! Why are you here? I am here to reach the students of my school, community, state, and nation. I want to teach them to live longer, healthier lives. I want to show them that with proper nutrition and moderate to vigorous daily exercise that they will be able to do all the exciting things that they want to do. Things like rock climbing, tennis, hiking, archery, and playing with their children and grandchildren. All students deserve to have this fit life.

I also have be truthful. I want to be a teacher of teachers. I want to lead professional developments, lead workshops, and do keynotes. I feel that the more physical education teachers I can reach with high quality professional development and proper attitude, the more students around the world that can have teachers that teach high quality physical education.

Let’s reach the world!



9355493_orig In my 9th and 10th grade classes over the past several weeks we have been talking about fitness. We have discovered the F.I.T.T. principle, the principles of training(exercise), and the 5 components of health-related fitness.
Today I finished up a lesson on the six skill-related components of fitness.

The students were very receptive to the skill-related components of fitness. They mentioned that they had heard all of these concepts before, but did not really know what they meant.

I split the classes into six groups and gave each group a different skill-related components and let each group come up with a definition. Each group then had someone stand up and read the groups definition and then compared it to the real definition. Some of the groups were right on. Some were not. After we learned the definitions we did an in class assignment to further remember the concepts being taught.

The six skill-related components are agility, balance, coordination, power, reaction time, and speed.

Agility – The ability to control the movement of the entire body and to be able to change body position quickly.

Balance – The ability to keep your center of mass over a base of support.

Coordination – The ability to use two or more parts of your body together.

Power – A combination of speed and strength.

Reaction Time – The time it takes a performer to move in response to something (a stimulus)

Speed – The rate at which someone is able to move, or cover a distance, in a given amount of time.

Over the next few posts I will be giving you some exercises you can do that incorporate these skill-related components of fitness. Future post will also go into the other areas of fitness.



246577_orig Well, I have to tell you I love it when students use the knowledge they gain in one class period in a later class period. In my classes we have been studying the six skill-related components of fitness, the five components of health-related fitenss, and principles of training. While learning about these we have been also playing hockey and doing gymnastics. So, last week I had a sophomore girl come up to me and ask, “Mr. Davolt, can we do more stretching on gymnastics day since it takes more flexibility”? I was excited that the concept had been learned and applied. I told her, “we sure can”. She had a big smile come across her face.

Gymnastics day rolled around for this particular students class and not only did I remember the request, but I praised the student in front of her peers for using the concept correctly. Then I had the student come forward and lead the class in her five favorite stretches. She was excited. She did an excellent job leading the class in stretches and the class did a great job following. She used the concepts of specificity and flexibility together! Yes!

I just had to tell you that success story. Now to the topic at hand. What exercises can we do in order to build our skill-related component of fitness? I like resourcing people whenever I can. I also believe that there is no need to recreate resources when there are already great things out on the interwebs for us to use.

Here are some great activities you can use in your classes.

Skill-Related Components of Fitness
Skill-Related Components of Fitness 2
Skill-Related Components of Fitness 3

I wish I could give credit to those who created these, but I cannot remember where I found them. If you recognize these please let me know who made them and I will give them credit. These are great activities!



575676_orig Most of us have heard of this principle. It is taught in our undergraduate courses. It is fairly easy to remember what F.I.T.T. stands for. The problem comes about when we try to get ourselves or our students to apply what the principle is talking about.

F – FRENQUENCY – How often we workout or exercise. Once a week, twice a week, every other day. There are multiple ways to
plan out how many times a week you exercise depending on the activity you are preparing for.

I – INTENSITY – This is how hard you work. It may be an easy day where you are only working at 70-75% of your maximum heart
rate. You may have a hard day scheduled which would be 85-95% of your maximum heart rate.

T – TIME – How long are you exercising? Is it a busy day and you can only get in 20 minutes or do you have more time and can
workout for 90 minutes?

T – TYPE – This is the type of exercise you are doing. Are you having a cardiovascular day, a flexibility day, maybe a strength day?
What exercises are you going to do to fulfill the type of workout you have planned for the day? Baskeball, soccer, weight
lifting, running, or yoga? There are many options to keep you from getting bored.

So now we can see what it means to be F.I.T.T. How often do you really apply it to your workouts though? Most people seem to be in-frequent about their exercise. They may go gung ho for a couple of weeks then take a long time off. Then they remember, “Oh, yeah! I have not exercised for awhile. I should go exercise”. Some people never change the intensity. They only get a couple of days a week to workout so they go all out all the time. Time seems to be the biggest factor when it comes to getting the necessary exercise we need. People these days are just busy with family, work, and school. So, exercise gets put on the back burner. Finally, type. People do not realize how many types of exercise there is to do. When most here the word workout they either think of weightlifting or running. Everyone needs to find a couple of different kinds of exercises they like to do so they do not get bored and just give up.

My challenge to you as an educator is to have your students make up practice workout plans in class in groups so you can see if they are not only understanding the concepts, but able to apply them as well.

On a personal note you need to find a few different exercises to do yourself and apply this principle to your own workouts and set a good example for your students.



The five components of health-related fitness. I love these components. Why? Maybe it is because I have had to teach and test them for the last 10 years. Perhaps, because they are easy for students to understand since we focus on them in class with the © FitnessGram and most other activities we do in class.

My one question is this, “Which term do we use”? Aerobic capacity or cardiovascular endurance? There is a difference. 

Aerobic capacity is the maximum amount of oxygen a body can use in an exercise session.

Cardiovascular endurance is the ability of the heart and lungs to supply oxygen-rich blood to the working muscle tissues and the ability of the muscles to use oxygen to produce energy for movement.

I know for © FitnessGram the Cooper Institute uses “aerobic capacity” when it comes to assessment. So that is what I tend to use. Oh, yeah you test it with one of the following, the mile run, the 12 minute walk test, or the Pacer test.

So, what are the other four components?

  • Muscular Endurance – the amount of times a muscle or group of muscle can repeatedly perform a movement. This is tested with the curl-up test.
  • Muscular Strength – a measure of how much force your muscles can exert. This can be tested by the 90 degree push-up test, modified pull-ups, flexed arm hang, and the trunk lift. 
  • Flexibility – the range of movement in a joint or a series of joints, and length in muscles that cross the joints to induce a bending movement or motion. Flexibility is test with the shoulder stretch, back-saver sit and reach, and the trunk lift.
  • Body Composition – the percentage of fat, bone, water, and muscle in human bodies. This is tested with body mass index (BMI).

Below is a video I made to show my students and help them understand. They seem to like and understand it.



8926377 So, it is winter break and normally I have my students fill out an activity log to chart their activity while away from school. HERE is a copy of the log. I would suggest downloading it in Word. Google drive messes up the formatting a little bit.

This year being at a new school and a high school at that I forgot to prepare this for the students. Now that I am at a different level we have to give a final of some sort so the log was put so far on the back burner it was charred and put in the trash. I will get back to normal next winter break.

What do you have your students do over winter break? Or do you have them do anything? What do you do over breaks? I love breaks because I have a chance to pick up more time on the road, trails, and archery range. I love running and shooting.

I have been thinking about creating a blog that I put on my student website,, just blogging about the activity that I do so I can show them from my example that it is important to exercise throughout your life. How do you set the example for your students?

It seems hard to get my inner-city students to understand the importance of life-long fitness. For a lot of students they have more important things to think about. Things like where is my next meal coming from or how can I best avoid walking through gang territory. Do any of you struggle with situations like this? If so, how do you help the students overcome their situations? How do you break the generational mindset?

With only a couple of days before Christmas and two and a half weeks left of break I get the opportunity to influence my own children about the importance of healthy living. Have a great holiday season!



677726 So, I have been teaching my ninth and tenth graders how to make personal fitness plans. We started out last semester learning about the F.I.T.T. principle, the 5 components of health-related fitness, 6 components of skill-related fitness, and principles of training.

Now this semester we have started out analyzing our pre-test fitness scores against the healthy fitness zones. From there we started talking about S.M.A.R.T. goals for teens. These are slightly different than the typical S.M.A.R.T. goals.



S = Specific
M = Measurable
A = Action Oriented
R = Realistic
T = Time Bound

We got stuck at this stage. Last week I had my students create on S.M.A.R.T. goal based off of their fitness test results. When I read through the goals about 99% of the students did not have a complete goal written. They would only have a couple of components of the S.M.A.R.T. goal. For instance they might only have the “S” and the “T”. Others would only have the “A”.

After seeing the results I knew I needed to do a re-teach. I spent a little more time on the concept of S.M.A.R.T. goals and had the students re-write in class so I could give some one-on-one help, if needed. The results were much better.

To continue on the path of personal fitness plans, the next step I have planned for my students is to have them create a week long workout plan. I will have them to do their plans for four weeks. After the four week period we will start the next round of fitness testing. Then we will compare our results to our goals and see if we reached our goals.

This process is going pretty well, but this is the first time these students have done this type of learning. So, it may take a little longer than I had planned on. I do believe that I need to figure out a way to extend the learning from the classroom. Maybe putting videos on my student website for them to refer to at home.

What do you do at your schools to teach your students this process?