Embracing Physical Literacy

Document Type


Department or Administrative Unit

Nutrition Exercise and Health Sciences

Publication Date



At the most recent SHAPE America National Convention held in St. Louis, MO, an international perspective of the term “physical literacy” was introduced. Experts representing North America, Europe, and Asia provided insight into the increased acceptance and implementation of the term. Since the terms “physical education” and “physical activity” are so widely used and recognized in the United States, it is important to discuss whether the use of the term physical literacy is just a fad, or whether it helps to elevate our profession, explain what we do more clearly and accurately, and bring us in line with all the other “literacies,” such as health literacy, computer literacy, etc. The purpose of this article is to provide some background, which will hopefully spark further professional discussion about the potential greater adoption of physical literacy as a key component in our field.


This article was originally published in Journal of Physical Education, Recreation & Dance. The full-text article from the publisher can be found here.

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Journal of Physical Education, Recreation & Dance