Physical Fitness

Meaning of Physical Fitness

Physical fitness is an aspect of total fitness that is concerned with the physical well-being of an individual. Physical fitness is the ability of an individual to carry out his or her daily activities without undue fatigue and still have energy for social activities.


Physical fitness can also be defined as the ability to perform one’s daily occupational activities and still have strength for recreational and emergency activities. Hence a person is said to be physically fit when he or she has ability to carry out daily activities without undue fatigue and have enough energy left to enjoy leisure time and to meet unforeseen emergencies.


Components of Physical fitness

The components of Physical fitness can be grouped into two.  These are!

  1. The health related component
  2. Performance or skill related component


The Health related Component

This is directly related to the health of an individual.  They are very important for survival regardless of age, sex, religion or occupation.  These include:

  1. Muscular Strength: This is the maximum effort or force the body can apply.  Some activities depend on the application of great force.  Therefore, increased strength often contributes to better performance e.g. Parallel bar dips, weight-lifting
  2. Muscular endurance: This is the ability of a group  Muscle of an individual to perform vigorous activities over a long period of time e.g. pull-ups, press up.
  • Muscular Power: This is the ability of the body to release force explosively with speed. e.g. running 100m, 200m, 400m races
  1. Cardio-Vascular respiratory endurance: This is the ability of the heart and the respiratory systems to utilize oxygen during strenuous exercises or active ities such as running, skipping, jumping, swimming, long distance races (marathon & cross country races).
  2. Flexibility: This is the ability to move easily at the joint i.e the ability of the joints to bend easily without hindrance e.g. sit ups, high jumpers, pole vaulter,


Performance related Components

These are essential for skills performance: These include

  1. Balance: It is the ability to maintain stability at rest after the performance of different kinds of movements, e.g. standing on one leg, jumping or landing on tramoline.
  2. Agility:  It is the ability to move quickly and effectively in different directions from different position with good body control. Examples are gymnastics, playing handball, basketball e t c
  3. Speed: This is the rate at which force move quickly over a short Period of time in a single direction e.g. 100m race, 110m hurdle, 200m e t c
  4. Accuracy: it is the ability to control the movement of an object accurately e.g. shooting in basketball, passing in football e.t.c
  5. Co-ordination: This is the effectiveness and orderly performance of the whole systems of the body. E.g. circulatory, nervous, digestive ,respiratory system e. t .c


Factors that Contribute to good Physical fitness

  1. Heredity: This is the traits inherited from the parents.  The form and structure of the body, set certain direction and limitation to development.
  2. Balanced diet (Nutrition): Good nutrition is essential for the development of the body.
  3. Regular Physical exercise: This helps to improve proper functioning of the body systems and easy digestion of food.
  4. Good health habit such as proper rest, sleep relaxation, medical and dental care, recreation enhances good physical fitness.
  5. Rest and relaxation: Adequate, sleep and relaxation are essential to good health and physical fitness


Characteristics of Physically fit person

A person is said to be physically fit when he or she possesses certain attribute which include the following:

  1. Physical soundness: A physically fit person is active and have skill in some physical activities. He or she enjoys a sense of well being.
  2. Socially healthy: A physically fit person has respect for the right of other and make satisfactory group adjustment.
  3. Emotionally stable: He or she is stable, have self control and faces reality in an honest manner.
  4. Mentally healthy:  He or she must have a good sense of judgement and a healthy outlook of life he or she can think independently and constructively and is re-successful.


A physically fit person must be physically, socially, mentally and emotionally fit and free from diseases and infirmity.


Importance of physical fitness to human life

  1. It helps in proper growth of the body.
  2. It aids digestion and improves appetite
  3. It helps in proper functioning of the organs and system of the body.
  4. It promotes sense of well-being
  5. It enable the body to resist diseases
  6. It helps to reduces high blood pressure
  7. It helps to participate adequately in sports
  8. It helps to control obesity
  9. It increases oxygen the oxygen carrying capacity of the body.



  1. Cut and paste pictures of someone doing the following physical activities on a card board
  2. Running
  3. Jumping
  4. Bending
  5. Walking
  6. Pushing
  7. Twisting
  8. Rolling
  9. Hopping


See also






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