Competitive sport and the training of the physical education teacher : a sociological study

2015-11-23T11:23:04Z (GMT) by John H. Wickersham
The development of this research project grew out of several initial observations concerning the career patterns of male teachers whose principal subject was Physical Education. It seemed evident from the outset that students in training for this particular career were usually sportsmen of considerable aptitude and ability. Prior to the course of training, and often throughout this period of vocational preparation, it seemed that many student teachers achieved acclaim and recognition for their sporting endeavours. However the present-day character of competitive sport demands that its successful participants possess physical qualities of high level, particularly if competitive successes are one of the expected outcomes. Accordingly the active life of successful sportsmen is often short and in certain extreme cases such as in competitive swimming, ‘retirement’ from competitive involvement is announced in the late teens or early twenties. Obviously for the Physical education teacher, this personal involvement in the sporting aspect of the subject must inevitably occupy a very short proportion of the overall span of his career.