Physical education grants are used to provide funding for a wide range of fitness programs and activities in schools and community groups. Funding for physical education grants can come from government agencies, businesses, or non-profit groups. Depending on the grant, individuals, schools, or community groups involved in fitness activities may apply for funding. These grants can benefit students in grades pre-kindergarten and up.
Like any grant, a competitive application process is usually required, but the money does not have to be repaid. Only applicants that meet the grant requirements are eligible to receive funding. Before awarding any money, the grant provider may request proof that the proper facilities are available for the physical fitness program. Some grants will also require recipients to give regular reports in areas such as how the money is being used and what students are doing in the program.
Physical fitness grants can be used for a variety of things, including gymnasiums, playground equipment, after-school programs, or childhood obesity prevention programs. The grant may specify how the money can be used. Grants for playground equipment, for example, may be used to offset the price of items such as playground slides, climbing walls, or swing sets.
Physical education grants to combat childhood obesity may fund programs that encourage kids to exercise regularly and eat right for the rest of their lives. There is an ongoing concern by parents and educators that children sit too much in front of their computers or televisions and do not get enough exercise. Computers, cell phones, video games, and fast food have all led to a decrease in physical activity for young people and an increase in weight. Being obese, especially from an early age, greatly increases the risk of diabetes. As obese children get older, they also have an increased risk for high blood pressure, cancer, joint disorders, and other issues.
Physical education grants may also be used for sports equipment for school or community programs. Schools may seek grant funding for sports equipment if funding is cut in this area. Grants may provide for advice from experts. This may include professional sports figures who offer free clinic or advice from a health-based non-profit agency.
Other physical education grants can be used by students seeking a degree or training in a physical education career. These kinds of grants may be based on financial need or excellence in physical education performance or studies. Like other education grants, additional funding through loans or other sources may be needed to pay for schooling.