chapter  11
The rediscovery of a female tradition in the physical activity field
The case of therapeutic exercise
ByAlison M. Wrynn
Pages 15

This chapter considers the ways that one historical focus of physical education for women, therapeutic exercise based on Swedish gymnastics, was an important constituent of the early history of women's physical education in the United States and Britain. The chapter considers Sheila Fletcher's description and analysis of the program at Bedford Physical Training College (BPTC) and its role in training young women for careers in physical training and therapeutic exercise. It also focuses on physical education, therapeutic exercise and physical therapy for young women in the United States in the years surrounding the First World War, as this was a time when physical education for women had established a firm foothold in both the United States and Britain due to its emphasis on Swedish gymnastics and therapeutic or corrective exercise. Then the chapter examines the program at BPTC and the role it played in training young women for careers in therapeutic exercise.