10 steps to design a physical fitness monitoring system

The guidelines highlight the most common and relevant issues related to developing a functioning physical fitness monitoring system for children and adolescents. There are practical steps provided to help users establish their own physical fitness monitoring system, with related examples and solutions to common challenges encountered.

These guidelines have been prepared in collaboration with representatives from Slovenia, Portugal, Finland, Hungary, and Serbia – the countries in the FitBack consortium that have established national physical fitness monitoring systems.

There are ten main topics and their rationale presented herein, including related case studies highlighted from these respective countries. The topics are formed based on expert opinions, supported by SWOT analyses.

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10 steps How to design a physical fitness monitoring system
Set up mission statements and aims Enable all stakeholders to understand the aims and scope of the fitness monitoring system.
Involve stakeholders Organize workshops to incorporate stakeholders - teachers, students, the students' parents, healthcare professionals, and others - into the proposed monitoring system.
Utilize scientific background Convince stakeholders and society-at-large that the fitness monitoring system is evidence-based and provides reliable feedback for further decisionmaking on an individual as well as population level.
Ensure sufficient funding Create strategic partnerships to secure sufficient funding for the establishment and maintenance of the monitoring system.
Governance structure Define key players, their responsibilities, relationships, and the decision-making process. Develop regulations and evaluate legislative requirements.
Data management planning Describe in detail how personal data will be collected, produced, and secured within the monitoring system.
Provide meaningful feedback Provide evidence-based, meaningful, user-friendly, timely, and web application-supported reports to the target stakeholders to engage them in the fitness testing.
Plan implementation process Provide training and materials for key personnel, communicate with all stakeholders, launch webpages as the main source for information and provide continuous support via help desk services.
Conduct pilot testing Carefully evaluate the feasibility of your envisioned testing organization.
Invest in communication with stakeholders Communicate key messages with stakeholders and the public to ensure the sustainability of your system, such as providing tips for improving fitness for students and their parents, generational changes in fitness level aimed for PE teachers, parents, and policy makers, or describing new application features to all users.

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