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Physical well-being in early childhood teachers: Correlates of work-related musculoskeletal issues and fitness among these “educational athletes”


Early care and education (ECE) teachers are constantly moving throughout their day with varying physical demands akin to those of athletes. Teachers are continuously bending, stooping, and squatting to lift and carry children as well as sitting on the floor or in child-sized furniture—all activities that require substantial fitness. This said, many ECE teachers have health issues including obesity, diminished aerobic capacity, and perceived stress, which can adversely influence their physical well-being and place them at risk for work-related musculoskeletal issues. This study of ECE teachers, which is part of a larger study of overall teacher wellness, involved direct, on-site measures of ECE teachers’ cardiorespiratory capacity and in-classroom ergonomic assessment of activities. These measures were then triangulated with self-reported health information to better understand the current status of various aspects of teachers’ physical well-being and correlational analysis was then used to identify potential risk and/or protective factors. (author abstract)

Resource Type:
Reports & Papers
United States

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