Specialist's Use of Heart Rate Monitors Proved to be the Final - and Most Impactful - Component of a Redesigned PE Program
When Scott Smith added IHT ZONE heart rate monitors to his high school PE program, his program turned for the better. With data specific to them, students became more engaged in their personal fitness.
In the years since, San Bernardino City Unified School District has added IHT ZONE monitors at seven other campuses with similar results. During a free webinar on Monday, Feb. 26, you can hear Smith's story as he joins IHT to explain what worked, why and how he hopes to keep expanding inside the district so more students have a chance to take charge of their health and wellness. The webinar begins at 6pm CST.
Smith has always been a proponent of using data to define his program. During a time when his program struggled with student engagement, Smith had students fill out a survey about how they felt about his classes. The results staggered him.
“We couldn’t keep going down this path,” Smith said. “We weren’t getting results and we were not meeting the needs of all our students. Every day was a struggle just to get through the day.”
The survey results verified what Smith and his fellow teachers saw in class:
- Students did not do the minimum required to pass the class: 30% of the students received Ds or Fs in the class on their report cards
- Discipline issues persisted: an average of 41 students each year were referred to the office due to behavioral issues or fighting
- Attendance suffered: less than 50% of the students attended class regularly
Smith's survey also asked students what they wanted to get out of their PE classes. He took the results to heart and immediately went to work building a program that students found value in. He mixed non-traditional sports in with the traditional offerings. He created opportunities for students who like to compete and for students who simply want to exercise without worrying about a score. The final piece to the puzzle was the IHT ZONE heart rate monitor, which motivate students by assessing each individually.
“The heart rate monitors have super-charged our program,” Smith said. “You can see it in the body language of the students, the look on their faces. As soon as we gave them the heart rate monitors, they really felt at that time that we really cared about them as individuals.”
At the end of the the first with the heart rate monitors, Smith asked students to complete another survey about the program. The results were night-and-day different from his earlier survey:
- 70% of students felt the IHT ZONE heart rate monitors encouraged them to set their own goals
- 83% of students said the heart rate monitors made PE relevant.
- 94% of students said their PE experience proved better than what they thought it would be at the beginning of the year.
In the years since he first added the monitors, Smith has moved into and administrative role. As a district-wide PE specialist, he was able to work with colleagues to add IHT ZONE heart rate monitors at other campuses. The results, Smith said, have been very familiar to him.
“I don't think you could have predicted the results that we are getting,” Smith said. “I can tell you for a fact that every class – every one – has shown an increase in participation, engagement, and excitement.”
During the live webinar on Feb. 26, Smith will dive deeper into how the technology has impacted students across San Bernardino. Register today to secure your spot and see how Smith's story might relate to your program.