Date of Award

Fall 12-12-2017

Degree Name

MSEd in Physical Education


Kinesiology, Sport Studies and Physical Education

First Advisor

Dr. Susan Petersen


Serious disabilities are diagnosed in approximately 1 in 100 of children who have serious disabilities (Jasma, 1988). The development of the psychomotor domain in children with serious disabilities is typically below the development of their peers without special needs (Jasma, 1988). Generally, children with serious disabilities tend to be sedentary or lack opportunities to participate in physical activity compared with their peers without disabilities (Jasma, 1988). Traditional assessments such as TGMD-3 (Test of Gross Motor Development) or Brockport Physical Fitness Test, are not designed or do not have accommodations for children with serious disabilities (Grenier, & Miller, 2018). The purpose of this synthesis is to identify, based on research the best practices and programing recommendations in physical education for children with serious disabilities. In addition, facilitators and barriers to this process will be explored. The intent of this synthesis is to determine how to best increase physical activity performance in students with serious disabilities. The results of this synthesis indicated Aquatic environment is the most appropriate environment for physical activity for individuals with serious disabilities. Literature reveals that the main barriers are people’s perceptions of disability and level of support needed. Adequate professional preparation when working with and modifying activities for children with serious disabilities is extremely important for teachers and paraprofessionals.