July 2007 - Adapted Physical Education & AT: To Play or Not to Play

Adapted Physical Education & AT: To Play or Not to Play

In this Issue...

That is the question that adapted physical education, often with the crucial aid of assistive technology, can answer.

In Pennsylvania, Beverly Martin long ago found the answer: With the help of assistive technology, play is the thing for children in her classes with severe and profound disabilities.

A certified adapted physical educator (CAPE) who has met national certification standards set since 1991 by Adapted Physical Education National Standards (APENS), Beverly has employed AT for the 23 years she has taught adapted physical education (APE) to youngsters in public schools in Pennsylvania’s Butler Lawrence and Mercer counties.

For Beverly, however, assistive technology is both high and low tech. In her physical education classes, according to a recent article in the Pittsburgh (PA) Post-Gazette, “metal washers, those tiny fasteners found in hardware store bins, become weights for lifting; high tech hovering disks substitute for balls for easy kicking.”

For each type of student with disabilities, the article continues, “Mrs. Martin has equipment that brings enjoyment and, perhaps, a sense of accomplishment. A simple example is a bowling ramp. Students are placed near the ramp, and can roll the ball down it onto the lane. A child who can’t grasp a bowling ball might be able to nudge one down the ramp.”

For generations children with disabilities nationwide received little or no physical education. More recently they have been consigned to special education PE classes. Still, many with severe and profound disabilities were left out by well-meaning phys ed teachers who possessed little or no training in how best to include them in a class’s physical activities.

Today, however, an increasing number of educators trained in adapted physical education – a growing number of whom are APENS certified -- are applying their training nationwide. The result: aided by the AT students are accustomed to using, plus less sophisticated AT like that employed by Bev Martin in her classes, more children with severe and profound disabilities are experiencing the exultation of play and the health benefits of physical activity. This issue examines the role of assistive technology in adapted physical education.

Dr. Timothy Davis Speaks
Tim Davis, Ph.D., associate professor of adapted physical education at the State University of New York/Cortland, was born to his profession. The son of former National Association of State Directors of Special Education (NASDE) director Larry “Smokey” Davis and former Council on Exceptional Children (CEC) executive Judy Smith Davis, Tim entered the field inadvertently around age eight. Recalls Tim: “My father helped write Public Law 94-142, the Education for All Handicapped Children Act, in 1975. At the time we were engaged in Child Find activities in Nevada (part of IDEA, Child Find requires all states to identify, locate and evaluate all children with disabilities from birth to age 21 who are in need of early intervention or special education services). He was tracking kids in need of services but in my mind we were going camping all summer. We’d pull into a small town like Pahrump, NV and he’s tell me, ‘Go play with that kid over there.’ I’d look at the child and say to my father, ‘But he’s so different, Dad.’ My father would reply, ‘Who cares? You go play with him while I talk to his parents.’ I’d go play. I have very fond memories of those experiences.”

A Nevada native, Tim’s first college experience was at a small junior college in northern California, which he attended in order to play football and baseball. “While I was there I took an introductory course in physical education. I enjoyed it and thought that I’d pursue physical therapy as a career.” He made himself available in the training room to assist the head trainer who was a physical therapist and worked with adults in post-cardiac rehab and traumatic brain injury. “I loved the work with him. The following semester he needed to hire a coordinator for that program and I was a natural fit.”

Next Tim studied adapted physical education at Cal State/Chico where he earned his PE and APE certification and a Masters degree in adapted PE. When he graduated, Tim’s dad, Larry, had a surprise for him. “He handed me a book he had written for the Nevada Department of Education entitled, Adapted Physical Education. He had a background in physical education that I was completely unaware of.”

Tenured in 2004, Tim has taught at Cortland for eight years. He fulfilled his doctoral requirements at the University of Virginia under Dr. Luke Kelly and Dr. Martin Block, two noted authorities in the APE field. Dr. Kelly is the primary author of the original APENS project. Tim’s dissertation was the validation of the project’s content and also of the APENS exam.

In 1991, when the APENS project began, Tim recounts, “My father phoned me from Virginia, where he was working with NASDE, and told me that NASDE was holding an action seminar on APE. He said they were inviting state directors of special ed and university professionals, including Luke Kelly, to develop content. I was running a wheelchair sports program at Chico called Ability First. My father said, ‘Why don’t you do a presentation for the NASDE seminar?’ Special Olympics International was involved as were NASADE and APHERD. Arnold Schwarzenegger was presenting under the banner of Special Olympics. He was the keynote speaker. My presentation followed his. That was some act to follow, and I was nervous. I walked up to the podium and spilled a pitcher of water all over my notes and had to wing the presentation. I made an impression, however. When I applied for the doctoral program at UVA I mentioned in my letter to Luke Kelly that I had been a presenter at the NASDE seminar. Luke replied, “You’re the one who spilled the pitcher of water!”

Today, in addition to his teaching duties, Tim is national chairman of APENS, which is housed at SUNY/Cortland. He’s an aggressive advocate for nationwide standards for adapted physical education teachers.

Supporting our interview with Dr. Davis are resources to assist parents and others in furthering their knowledge of the role of assistive technology in adapted physical education. We also feature members of our Knowledge Network. The members spotlighted this month focus on adapted physical education supported by the use of assistive technology. We invite you to contact these members for further information.

Please share this newsletter with other organizations, families and professionals who may benefit from it. We invite you to contact us at http://www.fctd.info. We welcome feedback, new members and all who contribute to our growing knowledge base.

Adapted Physical Education and AT: An “Unbelievably Strong Link”
An Interview with Timothy Davis, Ph.D., Chairman,
Adapted Physical Education National Standards (APENS)

Timothy Davis, Ph.D.“The link between adapted physical education and assistive technology is unbelievably strong and will only get stronger as the years pass,” declares Dr. Tim Davis, associate professor of adapted physical education (APE) at SUNY/Cortland and APENS chairman. “Individualized education is the crux of what APE teachers are trying to achieve. AT makes individualization so much easier, so appropriate and so exciting.”

APE teachers, he claims, clearly have a positive impact on children. “Kids with disabilities need us. They have a higher propensity toward obesity and often live sedentary lifestyles. Adapted physical education professionals can see what devices the child is using in order to level the playing field and to participate equally with non-disabled peers. Our training provides us with the creativity to draw the child and his AT support into a dynamic new setting: physical education.”

By the same token, he continues, “well-read, well-trained adapted physical education professionals are aware of modified equipment that falls under the broad definition of AT, equipment that might enable a child to learn, for example, how to ride his specialized bike, in order to recreate on a daily basis.” The child may not have gotten that opportunity if an adapted physical education professional had not been involved in the process, he asserts.

“So much of what we do in the area of homemade modified equipment falls under the definition of assistive technology,” he remarks. Adapted physical educators like Pennsylvania’s Beverly Martin, he notes, have an extensive knowledge of sophisticated AT and AT that is, or can be, homemade. “Effective adapted physical educators look at the functional capabilities of the child – the ability, not necessarily the disability.”

Zeroing in on Ability
“We zero in on the ability. We ask, What can we provide, what can we do, to enhance a child’s participation with his/her non-disabled peers?” Often an extension is required. “Say we’ve got a wheelchair user; we’re playing a tag game and the child may not be able to propel himself or push herself, so we have a peer assist in that regard, and we use a five or six-foot noodle to allow the child in the chair to tag someone running by. It’s such a simple, simple adaptation, but that noodle enables the disabled child to play like any other child. It’s the difference between playing and not playing.”

To narrow the scope of AT to the communication devices and electronic devices typically found in a special education classroom is wrong, he asserts. “Too often AT is perceived as those devices only. That’s not so. All too often what happens before children with disabilities come to physical education, especially the children with severe physical disabilities, is that their supportive equipment is stripped from them. The Big Mac switch is removed, which enabled them to say yes or no or thank you or let’s go or whatever we program into it to enable children to express themselves. We pull that technology away for fear of breaking it. Often the PE teacher has no idea what to do with the equipment anyway. “

Girl in a wheelchair playing baseballAdapted physical education teachers take an entirely different approach, he says. “Instead of stopping the whole class to work with one child, we can engage this child with severe and profound disabilities in a general education environment and make that environment the least restrictive. AT enables us to achieve that result.”

“We find that if there is an adapted PE teacher available those traditional barriers are quickly broken. Conversely, when no adapted PE teacher is available we find that child receiving some sort of modified or adapted PE in a separate setting with a person, albeit kind, caring and well-meaning, who was assigned this responsibility but who lacks the requisite training to make the activity beneficial.”

What Is APE?
Adapted physical education, Tim explains, can be defined as modified or adapted – individualized – teaching that is focused on children with motoric or gross motor delays.

“We provide a host of services to a public school system. Those services include assessment, data collection, IEP development, placement in least restrictive environment decisions in regard to the IEP process, advocacy for children and parents, community participation in transition to the community and, perhaps most importantly, direct service teaching children with disabilities in a dynamic physical education environment.”

Adapted PE is often confused with its adaptive counterpart. There’s an important distinction between the two, he says. According to Tim, “Adaptive deals primarily with behavior and is commonly found in psychology literature. Adapted is usually associated with curriculum modifications in equipment and has been adopted by many in the athletics community.”

In the past 10 years the view of physical education has changed greatly, he asserts. “The traditional view of ”gym teachers” is of a heavy set, crew-cut coach wielding a whistle and rolling out the ball. Although commonplace – we often see physical educators portrayed this way in the media – this view, he notes, does not accurately represent today’s more sophisticated physical educators, including adapted physical educators.”

Driven By Standards
Physical education, Tim explains, is a discipline driven by state and national standards. “Every state has physical education standards. However, regarding children with disabilities we see a set of specific standards that help the teacher and the child achieve and become more effective members of the community and users of available community resources. “

In 1991, he recalls, the APE profession realized that it lacked a set of standards. The information taught at the university level to earn a degree “was and is a separate set of knowledge that begins with a strong foundation in physical education but concludes with specific knowledge about the unique learners we service.”

To bridge that gap, a set of 15 standards was developed in 1991. Subsequently, across those 15 content standards close to 800 specific knowledge statements were written. The APENS standards have been constantly updated since then. “We now have a national certification exam through which teachers can earn a CAPE certificate and demonstrate their qualifications under a state or national definition depending on a teacher’s state and district and on which school administrator is interpreting the requirements of federal IDEA law or No Child Left Behind legislation.”

What has kept adapted physical education in the schools, he explains, is that under federal law, special education is a direct service and adapted physical education exists under the special education umbrella.

“We are, in fact, a direct service. All too often APE is confused with related services such as occupational and physical therapy, consequently, school districts may regard adapted physical education as ancillary.” “We have advocated nationwide on behalf of adapted physical education for children with disabilities because the service is required.”

The APENS mission is to put a certified adapted physical educator (CAPE) in every school district in the nation, which amounts to about 14,000 school districts. “If we can achieve that goal we would feel confident that there would be a knowledgeable physical education professional in each district who can help make appropriate decisions in regard to children with disabilities and physical activity, not only lifetime physical activity but daily physical education as well.”

Parallels with Special Ed
Group of teens on playgroundTim sees an APE parallel with a common special education dilemma. “There’s a host of special educators to address the needs of children with disabilities. However in physical education we often find that general PE professionals, who may be wonderful in their own environment, do not believe they have the training to work effectively with children with disabilities. It would be like saying to a reading specialist, “You are now the special education teacher – and here’s your class.” In theory, he concedes, “a reading specialist might be told, ‘The three-credit undergraduate course in special education you took years ago qualifies you to teach this special ed class.’ That approach is not effective and is a concern to us.”

He cautions his students “to be wary when they are being interviewed for a teaching position and the interviewer tells them that their resume looks great because they can perform so many diverse teaching tasks. I tell them, ‘Chances are, if you teach in a school district that values your diversity they will likely ask you to do many things.’ Teachers who are born jugglers can fit into that environment. Others, especially teachers just emerging from a training program, may be overwhelmed.”

A 1991 grant from the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS) provided the initial funds to develop APENS. Sponsored by the National Consortium for Physical Education and Recreation for Individuals with Disabilities (NCPERID) APENS has been self-sustaining ever since. “We regard that accomplishment as a feather in the cap of adapted physical education. Often in a school district adapted physical education teachers are isolated and itinerant, traveling from school to school. This is a way to provide a unified national voice for them and for our profession.”

AT Is the Key to Engagement
Boy playing with watergun with the help of an assistive deviceTim sees a trend he views as very encouraging: more assistive technology courses are emerging at the graduate level. “This content is being infused into existing training programs. We’ve even pursued a federal training grant to find that marriage between adapted PE direct service and AT. AT is that important to adapted PE practitioners and what we are trying to do across the nation.”

The most apt comparison in his opinion “is between life without the Internet and life with the Internet. It’s that black and white between physical education for children with disabilities with assistive technology and without assistive technology. If children with disabilities have AT, from the lowest of low tech to the highest of high tech, they are engaged. If they lack AT they are not engaged.”

“It’s so rewarding to see a children blossom in terms of their self-esteem because they have a way to interact with the world around them. That level of interaction often requires a modified piece of equipment or higher tech AT. “If it’s in the area of lifetime physical activity that equipment might be a specialized road-racing chair, a row-cycle, or a modified or adapted piece of climbing equipment.”

Beverly Martin personifies the model adapted PE teacher. Mrs. Martin in 2007 was named Adapted Physical Education Teacher of the Year by the Pennsylvania State Association for Health, Physical Education and Dance. “Bev is a nationally certified adapted PE teacher, a CAPE. I was happy to see that her efforts have been recognized in Pennsylvania.”

“She is a genius at creating low tech adaptations. So are other APE teachers. I’m talking about very simplistic adaptations, like using a rubber band to hold a pencil. I often tell my students that the rubber band is one of the greatest inventions in world history. It’s the simplest form of assistive technology; it enables me to hold a pen or pencil in my hand without a grip. Nylons can have the same impact. We can do so many things with a rolled up nylon or other common place items to enhance the physical activity of a child with disability. It simply requires the passion and ingenuity of a certified adapted physical educator or CAPE.

Virtual Sports for Rural Kids
Interactive games also have great impact on kids with disabilities, he explains. “In interactive gaming a child might move her hand, wave her arm and be able to knock something down on the computer screen and interact with a game on TV. She might see herself projected using the iPod camera. She can engage.”

Many APE teachers are employing that level of technology to engage their kids in vigorous virtual physical activity, Tim explains. “Computer based board games have spawned online sport competitions, like virtual tennis, between individuals with more significant disabilities. These kids are playing. Without the technology that interaction would not occur.”

“There are always those who criticize this technology because it is virtual -- kids play indoors. But if you are a child with disabilities in Pahrump, NV, for instance, and you are the one person with your disability in a 600-700-mile radius, it’s very difficult to find programs in which to participate in any way other than virtually.”

In urban and suburban areas there are indeed wonderful opportunities for children with disabilities to participate in person with their peers in sport-based programs, like wheelchair sports for example, he notes, but not yet in rural settings.

A Difficult Request
Is it feasible for a rural school district to hire a CAPE to work with just a couple of children?

“It’s a difficult request,” Tim declares. “I’ve seen it in Alaska, where we do a lot of work with the Anchorage city school district. Anchorage is a big city, yes, but the outlying areas are as rural as rural can be by 21st century American standards.” The adapted PE teachers there, he points out, often fly in to serve school districts. They travel with physical and occupational therapists to tiny isolated villages. Once there, these professionals, including CAPEs, train individuals who will remain and continue with the program. Technology, specifically the internet has linked these isolated teachers and families to a world of resources. CAPE consultants help to bring the virtual to reality.

“It’s a consultation model, not a direct service model,” he notes. “It’s a supervisory role in which a CAPE would have the knowledge to develop an IEP with an appropriate set of goals and objectives based on sound assessment data, an ecological inventory of occurrences in the child’s world, in her school and home, so that we get a reading on her physical activity beyond PE. In that way we see functional, generalizable goals and objectives that reach out into the community.”

“For instance, if an IEP goal for an Alaskan child is participation in the native games of Alaska, the CAPE would have knowledge of that and would know that the child’s family participates in those games. This is a cultural piece that we want to make sure that we capture. Therefore, it becomes part of the IEP process and part of what’s important for the child to learn.”

CAPEs, he adds, often wear their advocacy hats when in a rural situation. “We are itinerant and are providing consultation only to the individuals who are providing direct service. Wearing the advocacy hat enables us to expand on our normal status as adapted physical education teachers.”

Forging Partnerships with School Districts
SUNY/Cortland and many other schools develop partnerships with school districts that cannot afford to hire a fulltime APE. “We’ll have an adapted physical education graduate student provide 15-20 hours per week to a local school district. Part of the student’s training is to provide direct service to that school district. The district gets a big break on the salary it would have to pay to acquire equivalent services.”

If a parent of a child with disabilities happens to reside near a university that has an adapted physical education course or program, partnering with that university can be very advantageous.

“Our experience has shown that school districts desire these partnerships. Universities want these partnerships as well. They are a win-win for everyone involved.”

Unfortunately, he points out, in rural areas opportunities to develop partnerships using this model do not abound. With few training programs in physical education/adapted physical education for states such as Alaska, it is difficult to find highly qualified individuals to teach children with disabilities. It would seem that other locations in the lower 48, like Montana, Idaho, Minnesota, northern New Hampshire and Maine, for example, share the same problem of rural remoteness and would also require CAPE professionals to either deliver services or provide consultation.

“We see a parallel in special education where parents in rural states and counties have created alliances in special education to ensure that the services their children need are provided and to make sure that parents and children have a voice with which to tell the state, ‘We need the equipment and the personnel to provide service out here because we are not going to pack up and leave the life we love to relocate to a major metropolitan area where services are available.’”

These rural alliances are in place and proliferating, with some alliances more formal in structure than others. “Visible in those special alliances is a vein of adapted physical education. Some, but not many, of the individuals tending to those veins are CAPEs.”

California, Tim notes, mandates that a teacher must have a Masters in adapted PE to teach adapted PE. There are a handful of five or six states, he says, that require a state certification to teach adapted PE.

The CAPE certificate is an advanced certification, above and beyond an existing Masters degree. “An individual who comes out of school with three credits in adapted PE and took his special ed class rarely earns a CAPE certificate by passing the APENS exam.” The typical individual who passes the APENS exam possesses at least six years of teaching experience, is professionally involved, and has earned at least 12 credits in adapted physical education. “The successful CAPE has accumulated a specific knowledge base that demonstrates his/her involvement in and commitment to this profession and to children with disabilities.”

AT Is Part of the CAPE Profile
AT training, he notes, is often part of a CAPE’s profile. “But not all schools will devote equal time to AT. Some of the more innovative schools have training programs that produce graduates possessing more knowledge about a particular area than another. It’s not a canned model. Students coming out of SUNY/Brockport, for instance, have an excellent background in consultation (a specific course on consultation is available) while students coming out of SUNY/ Cortland have a strong background in assessment and disability because we offer a course in that area. In addition, students leaving our program have a certain set of competencies and artifacts to show in their portfolio that are representative of the training program they came from.”

In New York, all that’s required to teach APE is a teaching license in physical education. In order to have a teaching license in physical education, candidates need to take basic PE courses. Such a course of study might include a three-credit course in adapted PE. Whether the course exists or is mandatory is up to the discretion of the granting institution. New York State has some basic guidelines but they are recommendations only, not mandates – “and that’s unfortunate,” Tim declares.

All Good Physical Education Is Adapted Physical Education
Boys playing wheelchair basketballSince 1991 much progress has been made in certifying APE teachers via APENS. More than 1,000 CAPEs are now working in the nation’s schools, but, with 14,000 school districts nationwide, there’s a long journey ahead before Dr. Davis’s objective of a CAPE in each of the nation’s 14,000 school districts is in sight. In addition, many school districts, their ambitions constricted by budget realities, still do not view APE as a service they can afford at this time.

Tim acknowledges the long road ahead, but he is undaunted. “We do have a lot of work to do, but there are some wonderful states, Indiana, for example, that really get it. Indiana has moved to a nine-hour adapted PE requirement for all physical education majors, reverting to the notion that all good physical education is adapted physical education. In other words, all good physical education is individualized. You can say the same about all good teaching: All good teaching is individualized.”

“If we look at some of the general trends in education, we see a trend toward tweaking the curriculum to meet the needs of the individual rather than forcing a child into an existing curriculum model which may be too rigid. That’s a very positive trend.”

“AT is an essential ingredient in the wealth of resources available to teachers today. You can’t even scratch the surface of what is available in a training program. There are so many different models and so many approaches.” Take autism, for example, he says.

“Look at the breadth of behavior approaches, behavioral analyses that have been around for awhile. Then look at the emerging approaches that are linked to AT. Those new, innovative approaches are only going to continue to multiply. The same pattern holds true for other disabilities and for varying ability levels. AT is a very powerful tool and a very effective equalizer.”

“I’ve done three national presentations on the strong link between AT and APE. I did a pre-conference workshop for our national profession that was very well attended and engendered much excitement. Subsequently we’ve seen a variety of smaller articles in our journals about this linkage. Yet I do not believe that enough training programs have embraced it.”

Shying from the Embrace
Tim is convinced that this reticence can be traced to a lack of understanding of the definition of AT. “When you tell people that AT is a pair of glasses, they look at you oddly and then ask, ‘What does that have to do with communication?’ To them AT and communication are linked, and that’s how they define AT”

“In our field, those who are in the training programs now need to revisit that flawed belief. We didn’t have any of this equipment when my generation came through. The vast majority of us were trained before the Internet gained universal usage. We’ve had to learn on the fly. So to us it’s doubly amazing what we can accomplish now with the Web CT e-learning platform, for example, and all the ways we now have at our disposal to deliver our content. That’s another example of assistive technology that we often use but don’t think about.”

The truth is, he notes, “that some of us, even some as young as me, are dinosaurs in many ways. Our approach to higher education can be archaic. We’re the last ones to change. Even though we may think we’re on the cutting edge, we’re not. The teachers on the cutting edge are out in the schools making the necessary linkages and putting them to work for the benefit of children with and without disabilities. They are bringing AT into the life of a child and the child’s family.”

“We are remiss as professionals if we don’t tap into these resources and at the very least expose our college students and put them into hands-on situations so that they can see the application. We are far behind in that regard. To this day, I think, the vast majority of academic programs are paper and book-pushing exercises. It’s going to take some time for education to dispense with that outmoded model and move in the opposite direction. School districts and parents are going to be the driving force behind that sea change in educational approach.”

Fired Up
Boy with basketballThe goal of a CAPE professional is an inclusion environment, Tim declares. “For the past 20 years we’ve pushed hard to start in the general education setting, to meet the requirement of the least restrictive environment, to emphasize the ‘continuum of opportunities.’” Unfortunately, he admits, in PE that continuum may not exist.

“In PE it too often is either PE or adapted PE. The theoretical fabric of continuum isn’t there. Two days a week we are in general PE; two days a week we’re in adapted PE. We’ll frequently tell our students one thing at the university level and see them experience something quite different once they are in the schools teaching. For example, adapted PE is listed, for example, as ‘sixth period’ and is now a class instead of a service. It can become a dumping ground.”

“We see children pulled out of physical education in favor of other related services, and that fires me up. Kids, all kids, but especially children with disabilities, need that physical activity so much. There’s confusion even within our own profession about this service vs. class conflict, depending on the scheduling. “

AT: Key to the APE Future
In five to ten years Tim envisions a national certification that will stand parallel to National Association for Sport and Physical Education (NASPE) physical education certification standards. “I see adapted PE in direct collaboration with general PE, which we should be, on a national basis. So when we talk about physical activity and the obesity issues associated with children, we embrace all children. We embrace the need for everyone to be physically active and not just the general population, where much of the focus is now centered.”

“For the past 20 years we have been saying that children with disabilities are obese and lack opportunities for physical activity. In a few years I envision our profession being far more visible, recognized and valued because APE professionals possess a special set of knowledge that will afford children with disabilities and their families the opportunity to pursue lifetime physical activity. That’s my driving dream.” AT, he concludes, is an integral part of that dream. “Without AT, we will fail. If we embrace AT we will succeed.”

Register now
for the Family Center on Technology & Disability’s

2007 Online Assistive Technology Institute!
October 8 – 24, 2007

Join Dr. Sean Smith, University of Kansas and a faculty of AT experts as we explore:

 Transition and AT
Autism and AT

  • Earn continuing education units (CEUs)
  • Expand your knowledge of AT devices and services
  • Meet disability professionals throughout the country
  • Have in-depth discussions with national AT experts

 Funded by the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Special Education Programs,
The FCTD’s annual AT Institute is FREE to participants

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She Makes Phys Ed Special for Students
By Maureen Byko
Pittsburgh Post Gazette
March 4, 2007
In December 2007 Beverly Martin, who has taught elementary school physical education for 23 years to special education students in three Pennsylvania counties, was named Adapted Physical Education Teacher of the Year by the Pennsylvania State Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance. Mrs. Martin is noted for her ability to employ innovative – and unusual – equipment that helps her charges glean more enjoyment from their physical education activities. For example, a bowling ramp enables students to roll a bowling ball into the lane. A child who cannot grasp a bowling ball might be able to nudge one down the ramp. “A classroom aid developed by Mrs. Martin for one of her students consists mainly of a pulley, a handle and metal washers. Even with muscular dystrophy limiting the child’s mobility, he is able to lift weights using the pulley system to make the metal washers rise.” A kick dish is a more sophisticated tool that looks like a huge hockey puck, Mrs. Martin said, and hovers over the floor. She continues, “If you kick it softly it floats and glides. Kids don’t need a lot of force to make it go.” Mrs. Martin also utilizes a floating ball that can be blown up and tossed into the air, where it lingers. “Not much force is needed to hit it, and it moves so slowly that only limited hand-eye coordination is required to play with it. That item is always a hit in physical education classes,” Mrs. Martin said, where both students wth and without disabilities enjoy keeping the ball aloft.

Introducing the CAPE, the New Member of the Therapeutic Team
By Christine Stopka, Ph.D., ATC/L, CSCS, CAPE, MTAA; University of Florida; Tim Davis, Ph.D., CAPE State University of New York/Cortland; G. Monique Butcher , Ph.D., ATC/L, Barry University
Athletic Therapy Today - January 2005
The authors introduce and define a new discipline focused on assisting the athletic development of children and young adults with disabilities: CAPE, Certified Adapted Physical Educator. Numbering about 1,000 certified individuals nationwide, CAPEs work closely with athletes with disabilities and are highly trained in teaching and motor development.

Adapted Physical Education
Answers.com Education Encyclopedia
This article is a primer on adapted physical education, specifically the provisions of IDEA that relate directly to this discipline. Write the authors of this document, “The approach to stopping the practice of placing all students with special needs in regular physical education must be multifaceted. The ideal solution would be simply for schools to hire qualified adapted physical educators as intended by the law. This solution, however, is not as simple as it may initially appear. First, schools would have to recognize that their current physical education placement practices were wrong and then be motivated to make a change. In many schools these practices have gone on unquestioned for more than twenty years. In addition, there are no new fiscal resources to hire the additional teachers needed to correct this problem. To obtain additional public monies to fund these positions, schools would have to explain why these new teachers were needed and why they had not provided these appropriate services in the past.”

Frequently Asked Questions about Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy and Adapted Physical Education
Colorado Department of Education - 2006
Some of the questions and answers in this CDE collection pertain directly to adapted physical education.


Adapted Physical Education and Sport
By Joseph P. Winnick
Human Kinetics - 2005
The fourth edition of this book describes the legislative and practical changes that have impacted adapted physical education and sports. The author aims to aid teachers in fulfilling the following requirements:
• Provide education compatible with the definition of special education
• Identify the unique needs of each person with the adapted physical education program
• Offer personalized education specific to each participant’s needs
• Provide the most included, integrated setting possible for individuals with disabilities
Cost: $67.

Adapted Physical Education National Standards (APENS)
State University of New York/Cortland
This online guide provides an overview of adapted physical education and is aimed at Certified Adapted Therapy Educators (CAPEs). The guide includes the CAPE newsletter, a history of Adapted PE national standards, APENS exam FAQs and CAPE certification and recertification procedures.

Adapted Physical Education Resource Manual
By Carlos Cervantes, M.A., CAPE, The Ohio State University; Lauren Lieberman, Ph.D., State University of New York/Brockport; Kristi Roth, Ph.D. (Editor), University of Wisconsin/ Stevens Point; Carol Ryan, Ph.D., Northern Kentucky University
American Association for Physical Activity and Recreation
February 2007
The authors have fashioned a compendium of resources related to adapted physical education. All resources contained in the manual are Internet-linked. Category headings include: Disability Advocacy Organizations, Disability Sport Organizations, Equipment Companies, Education Websites and Lists, Family Support Organizations, Human Resources, Media (print and video) and Specialists in the Field.

Adapted Physical Activity Assessment Tests
Department of Kinesiology
University of Wisconsin/Oshkosh - 2005
This document lists all assessment tests that apply to adapted physical education. For more information, contact:
Adapted Physical Activity Assessment Tests
Department of Kinesiology and Health
University of Wisconsin/Oshkosh
800 Algoma Road, Albee 108
Oshkosh, WI
Phone: (920) 424-1231
Fax: (920) 424-7447
Contact: Dan Schmidt, Department Chair

Teaching, Responding & Communicating Inclusive Physical Education
Public Schools of North Carolina
This four-page brochure reviews state and federal laws and provides appropriate adaptations for inclusion. This document offers basic information to regular physical education teachers who may not yet be equipped with the knowledge and skills to effectively include children with disabilities into their classes.


ASD Online

Anchorage, AL School District Website
This site, which contains information about adapted physical education, includes a listing of common disabilities, descriptions of teaching strategies, photos of equipment for adapted physical education settings and a list of resources. The Anchorage School District’s adapted physical education department was awarded the first Physical Education for Progress (PEP) grant in 2003. Called Project ACCESS, the grant provides students with disabilities access to physical education via improved equipment and targeted teaching.

Achievable Concepts
This equipment manufacturer’s website offers a glimpse of available adapted physical education equipment. The site includes price lists.

Therapeutic Recreation Directory
This is a therapeutic recreation directory site with links to numerous topics ranging from activity and treatment ideas to workshops and conferences. “inTeRlink” is an online therapeutic recreation newsletter featuring links to articles on & related to recreation therapy and therapeutic recreation on the Internet.

Adapted Physical Education and Disability Sport Web Links
Maintained by New Mexico State University’s adapted physical education department, this site spotlights numerous websites and organizations associated with adapted physical education.

PE Central
This website features a wide range of resources on all aspects of physical education, including adapted physical education. Links to other sources of information are plentiful. For further information contact:
PE Central
1995 South Main Street
Blacksburg, VA 24060
Phone: (540) 953-1043
Fax: (540) 301-0112
Contact: Mark Manross, Executive Director
Email: pec@pecentral.org


Disabled Sports USA (DS/USA)
Disabled Sports USA logoEstablished in 1967 to aid injured war veterans, DS/USA now offers nationwide sports rehabilitation programs to anyone with a permanent disability. Activities include winter skiing, water sports, summer and winter competitions, fitness and special sports events. Participants include those with visual impairments, amputations, spinal cord injury, dwarfism, multiple sclerosis, head injury, cerebral palsy, and other neuromuscular and orthopedic conditions. The organization consists of a nationwide network of 80 community-based chapters offering a variety of recreation programs. Each chapter sets its own agenda and activities, which can include snow skiing, water sports (such as water skiing, sailing, kayaking, and rafting), cycling, climbing, horseback riding, golf and social activities.

For additional information on DS/USA, please contact:
Disabled Sports USA
451 Hungerford Drive, Ste. 100
Rockville, MD 20850
Phone: (301) 217-0960
Fax: (301) 217-0968
Contact: Kirk Bauer, Executive Director
Email: information@dsusa.org

National Center on Physical Activity and Disability (NCPAD)
National Center on Physical Activity and Disability logoAffiliated with the University of Illinois, NCPAD is an information center on physical activity and disability. The organization publishes a monthly newsletter, NCPAD News and offers products that include booklets and videos on facilities accessibility. The NCPAD website spotlights organizations nationwide, on a state-by-state basis, that support physical education and athletic programs for children with disabilities.

For further information on NCPAD, please contact:
National Center on Physical Activity and Disability
University of Illinois
Department of Disability and Human Development
1640 West Roosevelt Road
Chicago, IL 60608-6904
Phone: (800) 900-8086 (Voice, TTY)
Fax: (312) 355-4058
Sheila Swann Guerrero, Information Specialist
Email: ncpad@uic.edu

State Council on Adapted Physical Education (SCAPE)
State Council on Adapted Physical Education logoThe State Council on Adapted Physical Education (SCAPE) is the working body of the Adapted Physical Education Section of the General Division of the California Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation, and Dance (CAHPERD). SCAPE promotes accepted practices in health, physical education, recreation and dance for individuals with disabilities in California and encourages the establishment of quality physical education programs for individuals with disabilities in California’s schools and colleges. Additional information on SCAPE is available from the organization’s website.

American Association of Adapted Sports Programs (AAASP)
American Association of Adapted Sports Programs logoAAASP builds interscholastic sports leagues for students with physical disabilities or visual impairments grades 1-12. AAASP states that the programs they help create are comparable to programs commonly available only to students without disabilities. AAASP serves as the governing body and athletic association for these sports. The organization develops and operates statewide league programs for its programs while constructing a training and certification infrastructure for AAASP coaches, officials, coordinators and physical activity professionals nationwide.

For more information on AAASP, please contact:
American Association of Adapted Sports Programs
P.O. Box 451047
Atlanta, GA 31145
Phone: (404) 294-0070
Fax: (404) 294-5758
Email: sports@adaptedsports.org

Yoga for the Special Child
Yoga for the Special Child logoBased in Sarasota, FL, YSC offers a comprehensive gentle, child-friendly program of yoga techniques for children with Down Syndrome, cerebral palsy, microcephaly, autism, attention deficit disorder (ADD) and learning disabilities. The YSC therapeutic program includes an integrated series of balanced yoga poses to increase body awareness, strength and flexibility; specialized breathing exercises and relaxation techniques to improve concentration and reduce hyperactivity; an early intervention program to assure the healthy formative development of infants and toddlers. Courses are taught by yoga therapist and author Sonia Sumar. In the YSC 2007 program Ms. Sumar uses hands-on and video instruction to guide participants through each of the successive stages in the special child’s development, from infancy through adolescence. Topics include: choosing the most effective Yoga routine; creating the optimum home and classroom environment; and working with different syndromes and disorders.

For more information on YSC, please contact:
Yoga for the Special Child
2100 Constitution Blvd., Suite 125
Sarasota, FL 34231
Phone: (941) 925-9677
Toll-free: (888) 900-YOGA
Fax: (941) 925-9433
Contact: Sonio Sumar, Director
Email: info@specialyoga.com

New England Handicapped Sports Association (NESHA)
New England Handicapped Sports Association logoFounded in 1972, NEHSA is a volunteer, non-profit organization operated by and for individuals with disabilities. Their goal is to integrate individuals with disabilities into society through social and recreational activities. NEHSA is a group of people who pool their knowledge, skill and courage to participate in sports activities. In 1994 they expanded the program to include ski instruction for developmentally disabled persons. Today the program’s goals are to encourage positive attitudes, social opportunities and personal growth through the challenges that participation in outdoor sports and recreation offers.

Project Director: Jacqueline Hess
Newslettter Editor: Thomas H. Allen
Design and Distribution: Ana-Maria Gutierrez
Project Support: Annie Czapp

Family Center on Technology and Disability (FCTD)
FHI 360 1825 Connecticut Avenue, NW 7th Floor Washington, DC 20009-5721
phone: (202) 884-8068 fax: (202) 884-8441 email: fctd@fhi360.org
Copyright 2015
FCTD has been honored to serve you since 1999. Now our work has been taken up and expanded by the Center on Technology and Disability www.ctdinstitute.org. Please visit us there where you can find all FCTD materials in the CTD Library, view a wide array of new resources on assistive and educational technology, and participate in expert-led forums and professional development events.