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Physical Literacy

Physical literacy is about building the skills, knowledge and behaviours that give us the confidence and motivation to lead active lives.

Everyone has the potential to value, develop and maintain positive physical activity behaviours for life.

Physical literacy involves holistic lifelong learning through movement and physical activity. It delivers physical, psychological, social and cognitive health and wellbeing benefits, for all Australians.

Sport Australia has produced the Australian Physical Literacy Framework to support all Australians develop their physical literacy at every stage of life.

Physical literacy gives you:

  • physical skills and fitness
  • the attitudes and emotions that motivate you to be active
  • the knowledge and understanding of how, why and when you move
  • the social skills to be active with others.


Download the Framework

The skills you need to be physically literate

Sport Australia has identified the physical, psychological, social and cognitive skills people can work on to develop their physical literacy.

Keep in mind:

  • you don’t need to master them all
  • you can choose a few skills to work on at a time
  • what you focus on will depend on your current skills, circumstances and goals

This holistic learning enables people to draw on these integrated skills to lead healthy and fulfilling lives through movement and physical activity.

Help others develop their physical literacy

We all have an important role to play in supporting others to develop their physical literacy.

From infants to teenagers, it is important for children to continually develop their level of physical literacy. Parents can use physical literacy as a reference point to understand what their children should be learning through movement - at home, at school, and on the sporting field.

Physical literacy can be supported by coaches, sporting organisations and recreational providers who create programs and deliver sessions that focus on the holistic development of individuals, and provide opportunities for participants to enhance their physical, psychological, social and cognitive attributes.

Teaching skills to increase levels of physical literacy supports whole-of-child development and movement for life. Sport Australia, in partnership with the Australian Council for Health, Physical Education, and Recreation (ACHPER) have developed the Draft School Physical Literacy Framework that identifies the key components of a whole-school approach to the development of physical literacy in children including characteristics of exemplary school practice.

National Health and Physical Education (HPE) Day is a nationwide initiative (coordinated by ACHPER Australia), which highlights the importance of HPE in the Australian Curriculum, and its influence on children’s learning and development. Sport Australia is supporting the event, as it is a great opportunity to develop physical literacy in all children.

Physical literacy can be adopted through systems and policies across health, education, sport and recreation as a tool that improves individual and societal health and wellbeing. Policy makers can target aspects of the physical literacy domains – physical, psychological, social and cognitive in planning for impact with specific audiences and communities.

Additional resources

We want everyone to learn about and develop physically literacy, so please share some or all of these resources with your friends, family, students, colleagues, sporting club or school.

Learn more

Contact us

If you are interested in working with Sport Australia to help bring physical literacy to life, email the Physical Literacy Leadership team at physical_literacy@sportaus.gov.au

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