Execution of fitness testing in physical education classes is influenced by students’ motivation. Therefore, addressing new testing approaches seems necessary to more accurately measure student performance.
This study presents changes in fitness performance after applying a physical fitness tests battery (without external stimuli - WS) and with external stimuli (verbal encouragement - VE, performance feedback and goal-oriented) for university students.
The participants (432, BMI 24.72 ± 5.97, age 19.1 ± 2.1) were divided into non-physically active (NAS) and physically active students (PAS). They underwent a battery of fitness tests with and WS.
The results showed that NAS improved power in bench press (21.3W, 5.15%, P = 0.021) after performance feedback compared to attempts (WS). In 10m sprint, PAS decreased the time after a combination of VE and goal-oriented stimuli (COM) compared to WS (0.029s, 1.5%, P = 0.000) and in the 30m sprint (0.079s, 1.65%, P = 0.006) and after COM compared to VE in the 10m sprint test (0.024s, 1.24%, P = 0.001) and in the 30m sprint (0,089s, 1.86%, P = 0.000). NAS decreased the time after COM compared to VE in the 30m sprint test (0.053s, 1.06%, P = 0.006). NAS and PAS also improved in height after VE compared to WS in the height jump test (1.53cm, 6.39%, P = 0.000 resp. 1.24cm, 4.85%, P = 0.000), after COM compared to WS (2.11cm, 8.81%, P = 0.000 resp. 1.83cm, 7.16%, P = 0.000) and after COM compared to VE (0.58cm, 2.28%, P=0.013 and 0.59cm, 2.2%, P = 0.002).
These findings indicate that giving external stimuli is more effective for testing explosive strength, acceleration, and speed than WS and that PAS achieved better improvements in fitness tests after applying COM and NAS improved mainly after just one external stimulus.
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