In an attempt to increase population levels of physical activity, numerous policies and initiatives exist globally which target children in school settings. While individualistic behaviour change interventions have shown some success, there exists a wealth of literature from critical public health, pedagogy and sociology calling into question both the efficacy and harmful unintended consequences of such approaches. In an attempt to respond to these challenges, this paper advances an innovative approach to school-based physical activity interventionism by adopting a participatory, strength-based, cultural approach. Borrowing from the emerging method of ‘Revaluation’ currently being applied to healthcare research and sustainability programmes in England, Scotland and Northern Ireland, we describe how schools can be conceptualised as systems of on-going change involving pupils, school staff and parents situated within complex material and cultural contexts. Against this backdrop, Revaluation asks school staff to iteratively reflect on the value of their “whole school physical activity culture” and, in doing so, reveals the strengths, resources and capacities of the system. Furthermore, illuminating the system to its members provides a platform for co-produced change. Through reflecting on a pilot study using Revaluation with one primary school in Derbyshire, this paper argues that the approach has the potential to eschew pathologising inactivity, account for the diversity of school contexts and empower school staff to engage with new practices. We conclude by noting the strengths, limitations and potential scale-up of Revaluation as well as highlighting the need for further research before doing so.
|Publication status||Acceptance date - 2018|
|Event||7th International Society for Physical Activity and Health Congress - London, UK United Kingdom|
Duration: 15 Oct 2018 → 17 Oct 2018
|Conference||7th International Society for Physical Activity and Health Congress|
|Country||UK United Kingdom|
|Period||15/10/18 → 17/10/18|