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Adapted Physical Education Specialist

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Bachelor's degree

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What They Do

Adapted Physical Education Specialists Career Video

About This Career

Provides individualized physical education instruction or services to children, youth, or adults with exceptional physical needs due to gross motor developmental delays or other impairments.

This career is part of the Education and Training cluster Teaching/Training pathway.

A person in this career:

  • Adapts instructional techniques to the age and skill levels of students.
  • Instructs students, using adapted physical education techniques, to improve physical fitness, gross motor skills, perceptual motor skills, or sports and game achievement.
  • Provides individual or small groups of students with adapted physical education instruction that meets desired physical needs or goals.
  • Provides students positive feedback to encourage them and help them develop an appreciation for physical education.
  • Establishes and maintains standards of behavior to create safe, orderly, and effective environments for learning.
  • Provides adapted physical education services to students with intellectual disabilities, autism, traumatic brain injury, orthopedic impairments, or other disabling condition.
  • Assesses students' physical progress or needs.
  • Assists in screening or placement of students in adapted physical education programs.
  • Evaluates the motor needs of individual students to determine their need for adapted physical education services.
  • Collaborates with other educational personnel to provide inclusive activities or programs for children with disabilities.

Working Conditions and Physical Demands

People who do this job report that:

  • You would often handle loads up to 10 lbs., sometimes up to 20 lbs. You might do a lot of walking or standing, or you might sit but use your arms and legs to control machines, equipment or tools.
  • Work in this occupation requires being inside most of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves standing more than one-third of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves walking or running more than one-third of the time

Working in this career involves (physical activities):

  • Moving the arms, legs and torso together when the whole body is in motion
  • Bending, stretching, twisting, or reaching
  • Seeing clearly at a distance
  • Seeing clearly up close
  • Speaking clearly enough to be able to be understood by others
  • Identifying and understanding the speech of another person
  • Exerting oneself physically over long periods of time without getting out of breath
  • Lifting, pushing, pulling, or carrying objects
  • Using abdominal and lower back muscles repeatedly or over time without tiring

Work Hours and Travel

  • Overtime work

Specialty and Similar Careers

Careers that are more detailed or close to this career:

  • Certified Adapted Physical Educator
  • DAPE Teacher (Developmental Adapted Physical Education Teacher)
  • Adapted Physical Activity Specialist
  • Adapted Physical Education Teacher (Adapted PE Teacher)
  • Adapted Physical Educator
  • DAPE Specialist (Developmental Adapted Physical Education Specialist)


  • Email Support
  • 1-800-GO-TO-XAP (1-800-468-6927)
    From outside the U.S., please call +1 (424) 750-3900
  • North Dakota Career Resource Network
    ndcrn@nd.gov | (701) 328-9733