The term ‘Physical Education’ is complex and broad based. It includes many types of phenomena. In the beginning, physical education was used in the terms of physical activities, because physical education was essential for the people to survive. But the main stress on physical education was laid down in ancient Greece. The philosophers like Socrates Aristotle and Plato were of the opinion that physical training was must for youth. Even in India, physical activities were the essential part of life in ancient time. The meaning of the physical education changed many times during the various civilizations. Generally, it has been misunderstood. Someone was of the view that physical education is, whatever physical educators do. Sometimes, it was confused with physical training, playing games, physical culture, health education and recreation. But as a matter of fact it is more than these terms.
. Following definition clear the meaning of physical education to a great extent:
(i) According to H.C. Buck, “Physical Education is the part of general education programme which is considered with growth, development and education of children through the medium of big muscle activities. It is the education of whole child by means of physical activities. Physical activities are tools and are so selected and conducted as to influence every child’s life physically, mentally, emotionally and morally.”
(iii) According to C.L. Brownell, “Physical Education is the accumulation of whole some experience through participation in large muscle activities that promote optimum growth and development.”
(iv) Cassidy says, "Physical Education is the sum of changes in the individual caused by experiences centering motor activity."
In light of the above definitions, it can be said that Physical Education is an integral part of general education and it is essential for human beings.