Shape America – Enhancing Physical Education

A physical education teacher poses for a photo.

Shape America sets the standard for physical education. As Shape works to enhance physical education across the country, PLT4M is proud to be a part of the mission. PLT4M is a proud premier Shape America member dedicated to the shared mission of enhancing physical education for teachers, students, and schools.

Why is Physical Education Important?


In principle, the American public has always understood the importance of an active healthy lifestyle. Physical activity and fitness improve physical, emotional, social, and emotional well-being.


But in practice, we struggle to prioritize our health and wellness as a society. So why is physical education important?


Physical education is the foundation on which students can explore healthful physical activity. Better yet, well-designed physical education programs are the foundation for students to develop and practice skills that will last a lifetime.


And while this call to action for physical education might seem obvious to some, the subject of physical education is constantly battling for respect and relevance within schools. To help this battle, the national association of Shape America has been a leading advocate in the world of physical education.

The Mission Behind Shape America


“SHAPE America – Society of Health and Physical Educators serves as the voice for 200,000+ health and physical education professionals across the United States.”


As the nation’s largest membership organization for physical educators, Shape America has impacted elementary to high school physical education since its founding in 1885. Over the years, Shape America has helped to provide resources and professional development for physical educators at all grade levels. Shape has a clearly defined vision and mission:


Vision: A nation where all children are prepared to lead healthy, physically active lives.


Mission: To advance professional practice and promote research related to health and physical education, physical activity, dance, and sport.

A teacher explains the points of performance of an air squat during physical education class.
A teacher explains the points of performance of an air squat during physical education class.

Shape America Standards


Over the years, Shape America has “served as the foundation for well-designed physical education programs” and has helped to define the makings of a quality physical education program.


While Shape America offers a wide variety of resources, they are best known for creating the national standards for physical education. In addition, they also have national health education standards, dance, sport, and other national standards.


As a national organization, Shape has helped defined America’s national standards for physical education.


The 5 Shape Standards are

  • Standard 1: The physically literate individual demonstrates competency in a variety of motor skills and movement patterns.
  • Standard 2: The physically literate individual applies knowledge of concepts, principles, strategies and tactics related to movement and performance.
  • Standard 3: The physically literate individual demonstrates the knowledge and skills to achieve and maintain a health-enhancing level of physical activity and fitness.
  • Standard 4: The physically literate individual exhibits responsible personal and social behavior that respects self and others.
  • Standard 5: The physically literate individual recognizes the value of physical activity for health, enjoyment, challenge, self-expression and/or social interaction.

Shape Standard & PLT4M Alignment PDF 

Explore how every PLT4M program is aligned to the Shape America National Standards. 

Shape America and PLT4M


While Shape America helps to define and outline the standards, it falls on physical education teachers and organizations to put them into practice. As a result, PLT4M has created a comprehensive curriculum and technology that aligns with Shape Standards.


Over 1,000 schools nationwide are utilizing PLT4M for middle and high school physical education. Jessica Shawley (Shape Teacher of the Year) and Christi Meyer have been long-time believers in Shape America’s mission. They have made PLT4M an integral part of their physical education program for years. Christi Meyer, department chair at Lewiston, has this to say about PLT4M,


“We saw PLT4M as a valuable resource in our ability to deliver a high-quality curriculum. Our goal has always been to provide students fitness, health, and wellness experiences, and we saw PLT4 M’s curriculum as our best opportunity to enhance that.” 

Jessica Shawley, Doug Curtin, and Christi Meyer at the Shape America National Conference.
(Left to Right) Jessica Shawley, Doug Curtin, and Christi Meyer at the Shape America National Conference.

Deepening The Bond Between Shape America and PLT4M


PLT4M has been a long-time supporter of the Shape America mission. Together, the two organizations share similar values around promoting and supporting school-based health and wellness opportunities for students and teachers.


While PLT4M programs are aligned to Shape Standards, the bond doesn’t stop there. PLT4M is a premier member of Shape and is proud to sponsor and support the continued mission of the Shape America national association.


“SHAPE America partners with corporate and nonprofit companies to support and grow membership while also providing relevant and innovative programs, products and services related its mission.”


In addition to this partnership, PLT4M is always proud to attend and present at Shape America national and local conferences.

Shape America Premier Logo.
PLT4M is a Shape America Premier Member.

PLT4M In Action


We know that envisioning physical education with a resource like PLT4M can be hard to picture. Check out an inside look at Canton High School in Massachusetts, which has used PLT4M and Shape America national standards to create a cutting-edge physical education program.


Take an inside look at how Canton prioritizes fitness and wellness before, during, and after school. 

Key Takeaways on Shape America


Shape America has been around for over a century! And as they continue to push and advocate for physical education, PLT4M is excited to continue collaborating and promoting healthful physical activity for all students. 


As a nation, we must prioritize physical education and truly value its essential role in overall school health. We can improve student performance, health, and well-being through physical education. But, like anything, it takes a village!


Ready to Learn More? 

Schedule a free 10 minute consultation to see how the PLT4M system can help save you time, and empower student learning!



What type of PE lesson plans does PLT4M have?


All PLT4M pe lesson plans are aligned to Shape standards. Check out a sampling of different lesson plans below:


Do Shape America Standards address technology use?


Technology in physical education might seem counterintuitive. But Shape America has done research and broken down technology in standard 3.


How many schools currently use technology in their PE class?


Thousands of schools use technology in their classrooms, and over 1,000 schools are currently using PLT4M. Teachers have taken time and advocacy for schools to consider investing in technology for PE, but more and more schools are starting to see the long-term benefits. 


PLT4M is here to help when it comes to advocacy! For example, when physical education teachers do a demo with PLT4M, they are equipped with countless resources to sell administrators and stakeholders. 

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