The Power of Physical Activity Assessment Tools

by: Nick Kline, Active Schools Director

Active Schools Champions can all agree that physical activity is important in promoting student success. Understanding how to evaluate physical activity programs may not be as clear. That’s where tools like the Youth Activity Profile (YAP) and the Comprehensive School Physical Activity Program Questionnaire (CSPAP-Q) come into play.

The Youth Activity Profile (YAP) is a tool designed to assess and track students’ physical activity levels. Its user-friendly interface allows youth to evaluate their personal activity patterns and consider ways to be more active. The YAP allows schools to identify areas for improvement, track progress over time, and tailor physical activity programs to meet their students’ unique needs. The Youth Activity Profile can complement the other Active Schools’ resources by helping schools plan and evaluate programming aimed at promoting physical activity.

The Comprehensive School Physical Activity Program Questionnaire (CSPAP-Q) is another tool to help schools self-evaluate how their physical activity policies and practices align with best practices in the field. The results can be used to plan and advocate for more robust school physical activity policies, practices, and programs. The CSPAP-Q enables schools to identify strengths and areas for improvement, resulting in more effective and sustainable physical activity initiatives.

Children need at least 60 minutes of physical activity a day. Schools are positioned to ensure this goal is attainable. By regularly monitoring outcomes and adjusting strategies, schools can ensure that their efforts are aligned with their goals and objectives. YAP and CSPAP-Q provide schools with data to inform their decisions related to physical activity programming. For additional strategies using process and outcome measures related to physical activity effectiveness, refer to the Active Schools Evaluation Handbook.

In conclusion, schools can develop more targeted, effective, and sustainable physical activity programs by harnessing the power of data. The Youth Activity Profile and Comprehensive School Physical Activity Program Questionnaire are two options available for free from Active Schools

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Becoming an Active Schools Champion is a way to make a difference in the health and education of the next generation. It’s how we bring health equity to schools. It’s how we start a movement.