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Dr. Risto Marttinen
EdD, Teachers College Columbia University
Associate Professor
Physical Education, Advanced Studies in Teaching and Learning
Health and Physical Education

Contact Information

Send email to Dr. Marttinen

Phone: (703) 993-7109
Fax: (703) 993-2025
Email: rmarttin (

Risto Marttinen's website

George Mason University
Fairfax Campus
RAC 2109
4400 University Dr.
MS 1F6
Fairfax, VA 22030


My research revolves around implementing sustainable and educational after-school physical education programs in elementary and middle schools. These programs specialize in sports and fitness in under-served communities while reinforcing character development and teaching STEM and common-core literacy skills. Additionally, I conduct research on teaching in physical education and research on the integration of academic subjects and technology into PE. 

Research Interests

After-School Phyiscal Activity Programs in under-served and urban communities 

Integartion of STEM, and Literacy in to Phyiscal Education and After-School Programs

Research on Teaching in Phyiscal Education 

Student Attitude in Physical Education 

Youth Sport Retention (wrestling)

Recent Publications


Marttinen, R., Centeio, E., & Quarmby, T. (Eds.). (2020). Before and after school physical activity programs: Frameworks, critical issues and underserved populations. Routledge Sport and Leisure.


Marttinen, R., Wilson, K.S., Fisher, K., Beitzel, M., & Fredrick. R. (in press) Process evaluation and challenges in collecting data from an after-school sports and literacy program in a diverse, low-income community. Evaluation and Program Planning (aop). 10.1016/j.evalprogplan.2022.102052

Banville, D., Marttinen, R., & Rodrigues, A*. (2022). The secondary school curriculum: Teacher and students’ perspectives. Journal of Teaching in Physical Education. (aop)

Alfrey, L., Lambert, K., Aldous, D., & Marttinen, R. (2022). The problematization of the (im)possible subject: An analysis of health and physical education policy from Australia, USA and Wales. Sport Education and Society. (aop)

McMullen, J.M., Killian, C.M., Richards, K.A.R., Jones, E.M., Krause, J.M., O’Neil, K., & Marttinen, R. (2022). The PETE Collaborative: Established in crisis, sustained through community. (aop) Quest.

Marttinen, R., McAlister, K., Ives, S., Battistella, S., Fredrick, R., Johnston, K., & Wilson, K. S. (2021) Fitness, PA, perceived competence, parental support, and literacy outcomes in the REACH after-school sports program. Collegium Antropologicum, 45(3), 225-234. doi:10.5671/ca.45.3.6

Centeio, E., Mercier, K., Garn, A., Erwin, H., Marttinen, R., & Foley, J. (2021). The success and struggles of physical education teachers while teaching online during the COVID-19 pandemic. Journal of Teaching in Physical Education1(aop), 1-7.

Mercier, K., Centeio, E., Garn, A., Erwin, H., Marttinen, R., & Foley, J. (2021). Physical education teachers’ experiences with remote instruction during the initial phase of the COVID-19 Pandemic. Journal of Teaching in Physical Education. (aop)

Fredrick, R., Marttinen, R., & Johnston, K. (2021). Broadening horizons: A case study of an international partnership to promote sport, positive youth development and literacy. Journal of Teaching in Physical Education. (aop).

Banville, D., Marttinen, R., Kulinna, P., & Ferry, M. (2021).  Curriculum decisions made by secondary physical education teachers and comparison with students’ preferences. Curriculum Studies in Health and Physical Education (aop)

Hemphill, M., Marttinen, R., & Richards, K.A.R. (2021). One physical educator’s struggle to implement restorative practices in an urban intensive environment. Journal of Teaching in Physical Education. (aop)

Daum, D., Marttinen, R., & Banville, D. (2021). Service-learning experiences for pre-service teachers: Cultural competency and behavior management challenges when working with a diverse low-income community. Physical Education and Sport Pedagogy. (aop)

Griffo, J. M*., Kulinna, P. H., Marttinen, R. H. J., & Battistella, S. (2021). A systematic review of integrative practices in physical education (2009-2018).  The International Journal of Education, 104 (aop).

Marttinen, R., Meza, B*., & Flory, S. (2020). Stereotypical views of beauty and boys STILL not letting girls play: A student-centered curriculum for young girls through an after-school activist approach. Journal of Teaching in Physical Education, (ahead of print), 1–8.

Marttinen, R., Simon, M., Phillips, S., & Fredrick, R.N. (2020). Latina elementary school girls’ experiences in an urban after-school physical education and literacy program. Journal of Teaching in Physical Education, (ahead of print), 1-10.

Phillips, S., Marttinen, R., Mercier, K., & Gibbone, A. (2020). Middle school students’ perceptions of physical education: A qualitative look. Journal of Teaching in Physical Education, 40(1), 30-38.

Marttinen, R., Landi, D., Silverman, S., & Novak, D. (2020). A systematic analysis of research on teaching in physical education: Two decades of progress. Journal of Teaching in Physical Education, 39(4), 545-554.

Simon, M., Marttinen, R., & Phillips, S. (2020). Marginalized girls’ gendered experiences within a constructivist afterschool program (REACH). Sport Education and Society, 1-13. (ahead of print)

Marttinen, R., Johnston, K., Flory, S., & Meza, B.* (2020). Enacting a body-focused curriculum with young girls through an activist approach: Leveraging the after-school space. Physical Education and Sport Pedagogy, 25(6) 585-599.

Landi, D., Flory, S., Safron, C*., & Marttinen, R. (2020). LGBTQ research in physical education: A rising tide? Physical Education and Sport Pedagogy, 25(3), 259-273.

Millar, N. A.*, Colenso-Semple, L. M., Lockie, R., Marttinen, R., & Galpin, A. (2020). In season hip thrust vs. back squat training in female high school soccer players. International Journal of Exercise Science, 13(4), 49-61.

Marttinen, R., Daum, D., Banville, D., & Fredrick, R. (2020). Pre-service teachers learning through service-learning in a low SES school. Physical Education and Sport Pedagogy, 25(1), 1-15.

McAlister, K.,* Fisher, K., Wilson, K., & Marttinen, R. (2020). Correlation and wear-time compliance of the wrist-worn SQORD activity monitor compared to the Actigraph 3TGX in measuring free-living physical activity in low SES elementary youth. Californian Journal of Health Promotion, 17(2), 28-40.

Marttinen, R., Fredrick, R., Johnston, K., Phillips, S., & Patterson, D. (2020). Implementing the REACH after-school program for youth in urban communities: Challenges and lessons learned. European Physical Education Review, 26(2), 410-428.

Meza, B.,* & Marttinen, R. (2019). The GIRL Curriculum: Co-constructing learning about body image through empowering after-school programming. Journal of Youth Development, 14(4), 216-231.

Marttinen, R., Landi, D., Fredrick, R., & Silverman, S. (2019). Wearable digital technology in PE: Advantages, barriers and teachers’ ideologies. Journal of Teaching in Physical Education, 39(2), 227-235.

Marttinen, R., Johnston, K., Phillips, S., Fredrick, R., & Meza, B*. (2019). REACH Harlem: Young urban boys experiences in an after-school PA positive youth development program. Physical Education and Sport Pedagogy, 24(4), 373-389.

Marttinen, R., Daum, D., Fredrick, R., Santiago, J*., & Silverman, S. (2019). Students’ perceptions of technology integration during the F.I.T. Unit. Research Quarterly for Exercise and Sport, 90(2), 206-216.

Johnston, K., Marttinen, R., Fredrick, R., & Bhat, V. (2019). Girl’s experiences in a PYD sport program: Developing a participant-centered space. Journal of Youth Development, 14(1), 93-111.

Ambegaonkar, J. P., Pierce, C., Cortes, N., Marttinen, R., & Caswell, S. (2018). Physical activity and enjoyment during dance-focused physical education classes in middle school girls. International Journal of Physical Education, 55(4), 23-34.

Marttinen, R., Fredrick, R., & Silverman, S. (2018). Changes in student attitude toward physical education across a unit of instruction. Journal of Physical Education and Sport, 18(1), 62-70.

Marttinen, R., Fredrick III, R., & Silverman, S. (2018). Middle school students’ free-living physical activity on physical education days, non-physical education days, and weekends. Montenegrin Journal of Sports Science and Medicine, 7(1), 5-12.