Professional identity among student teachers of physical education: the role of physicality

Jukka Virta, Päivi Hökkä, Anneli Eteläpelto, Helena Rasku-Puttonen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


In this study, we investigate the role of physicality in the professional identities of physical education (PE) student teachers. Twenty PE student teachers participated in semi-structured interviews during their final teaching practice. Data were analysed using qualitative thematic analysis and typologies. The results showed substantial diversity in the student teachers’ conceptions of physicality and the ways these conceptions were embedded in their developing professional identities. The results also brought to light criticism directed at traditional notions of the body and physicality in PE and PE teacher education (PETE). We suggest that conceptions of the body and physicality represent a central element of PE teachers’ professional identity. The results also indicate a relationship between conceptions of physicality and pedagogies implemented in the future. Time and place for student teachers to discuss body-related matters should be provided in PETE.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)192-210
Number of pages19
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 15 Mar 2019
Externally publishedYes
Publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • physical education
  • physicality
  • Physicality in professional identity
  • professional identity
  • student teachers
  • teacher education

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education


Dive into the research topics of 'Professional identity among student teachers of physical education: the role of physicality'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this