Call for papers 59

(July-December 2022)

Topic: The challenge of educating and the adventure of learning through human movement

Deadline for reception: January 15, 2022


Pablo Caballero-Blanco
(University of Seville, Spain)

María del Pilar Rodríguez Martínez
(ITESO, Mexico)

Human movement has played a key role in the development of individuals and societies throughout history. Its manifestations have varied greatly, ranging from the gymnastics, wrestling and track and field competitions meant as military training in Ancient Greece and Rome, to games and playful activities with ceremonial and ritualistic aspects. The evolution of human movement and its manifestations have given rise to the development of specific disciplinary fields, such as physical education, sport, recreation, physical activity and alternative activities involving movement.

Human movement and its manifestations are conceived as means for generating a teaching-learning action in the individual. From the educational standpoint, one of the emphases or purposes of this field of study is “movement education,” based on an intrinsic perspective centered on movement itself. Another orientation is known as “education through human movement,” which focuses on the body’s educational potential and the acquisition of motor skills as means for attaining teaching-learning objectives in other areas or dimensions of the human person.

Human movement goes beyond the study of the body in movement and the functional focus of the “human machine” that has its roots in Cartesian dualism. Rather, it works with a broader conception that recognizes movement as a human expression by which subjects deploy all of their bio-psycho-sociocultural dimensions to build meanings and ways of thinking that relate to their own world and the world of others (ANECA, 2006).

On the basis of this wide-ranging conception of human movement that encompasses more than just understanding and studying moving bodies, there is broad consensus today in recognizing that its manifestations (sport, physical activity, recreation, among others) offer powerful tools for making a positive impact on individuals’ psychosocial development and strengthening their life competencies, thus contributing to the education of the whole person in a way that prepares them for life. As Palmi and Riera (2017) point out, physical-sport-recreational activities foster aspects such as resistance, willpower, autonomy, discipline, cooperative work and self-control, among others, especially when they are undertaken from a perspective of positive development focusing on enhancing competencies and skills and not on correcting people’s negative aspects.

At the same time, it has also been shown that the educational value of physical-sport-recreational activities depends to a large extent on the objectives pursued with these activities and on contextual aspects, such as group dynamics, the design of learning situations, the definition of success and achievement, and the mediations of meaningful adults, among others. These issues have prompted different efforts in the field to generate approaches and methodologies that foster educational actions aimed at furthering the participants’ psychosocial and moral development; among these efforts are the life skills development model (Danish & Nellen, 1997), sport for peace (Ennis et al., 1999), the promotion of moral and ethical behavior and moral development (Bredemeier, 1994), and the promotion of personal and social responsibility (Hellison, 2011).

This same logic has guided the development of more recent pedagogical models that seek to adapt the process of designing teaching-learning situations that include physical-sport-recreational activities so that they meet today’s social needs and thus contribute to the participants’ integral development. These pedagogical models can be classified as basic models (cooperative learning, comprehensive model, responsibility model, among others) (Dyson, Griffin & Hastie, 2004; Peiró-Velert and Méndez-Giménez, 2017), and emerging models, including education through adventure, physical education for health, attitudinal style, the game-based technical model, and motor literacy (Fernández-Río et al., 2016).

Given the need for deeper insights into the educational potential offered by human movement in its different manifestations, and its impact on participants’ bio-psycho-sociocultural development, Sinéctica is calling on researchers and scholars in the field to share articles that report on their unpublished research. In this way, it hopes to identify factors, scenarios, practices, programs, mediations and emerging models that foster or inhibit the psychosocial development of participants in physical-sport-recreational activities.

The topics that will be considered for number 59 are the following:

  • Contributions of current pedagogical models to physical education.
  • Impact of positive development models on physical activity, sport and recreation.
  • Design of learning situations aimed at fostering active, healthy lifestyles.
  • Benefits of physical-sport-recreational activities in strengthening social interaction processes and repairing the social fabric.
  • Mediating agents and their impact on the psychosocial development of participants in physical-sport-recreational activities.
  • Formation of mediating agents for the positive development of participants in physical-sport-recreational activities.

Key words: learning, human movement, physical activity, sport, recreation

Bibliographical references

Agencia Nacional de Evaluación de la Calidad y Acreditación (ANECA) (2006). Libro blanco del título de grado en ciencias de la actividad física y el deporte. http://

Bredemeier, B. (1994). Children's moral reasoning and their assertive, aggressive, and submissive tendencies in sport and daily life. Journal of Sport & Exercise Psychology, vol. 16, núm. 1, pp. 1-14.

Danish, J. & Nellen, V. (1997). New roles for sport psychologists: Teaching life skills through sport to at-risk youth. Quest, vol. 49, núm.1, pp. 100-113.

Dyson, B., Griffin, L. & Hastie, P. (2004). Sport education, tactical games, and cooperative learning: Theoretical and pedagogical considerations. Quest, núm. 56, pp. 226-240.

Ennis, C., Solmon, M., Satina, B., Loftus, S.J., Mensch, J. & McCauley, M. (1999). Creating a sense of family in urban schools using the “Sport for Peace” curriculum. Research Quarterly for Exercise and Sport, vol. 70, pp. 273-285.

Fernández-Río, J., Calderón, A., Hortigüela, D., Pérez-Pueyo., A. y Aznar, M. (2016). Modelos pedagógicos en educación física: consideraciones teórico-prácticas para docentes. Revista Española de Educación Física y Deportes, núm. 413, pp. 55-75.

Hellison, D. (2011). Teaching responsibility through physical activity (3a. ed.). Champaign, IL: Human Kinetics.

Palmi Guerrero, J. y Riera, J. (2017). Las competencias del deportista para el rendimiento. Cuadernos de Psicología del Deporte, vol. 17, núm. 1, pp. 13-18.

Peiró-Velert, C. y Méndez-Giménez, A. (2017). Modelos pedagógicos en educación física. Tándem, núm. 57, pp. 4-6.