Charles W. (Pop) Wannan, 82, director of boys' physical education at Sidwell Friends School here for 37 years until retiring in 1960, died Wednesday at Suburban Hospital in Bethesda after a long illness.

A Washington native, Mr. Wannan attended Springfield College in Massachusetts and began his career as assistant physical education director of the Washington YMCA in 1914. He joined the Sidwell Friends staff in 1923, and coached football, basketball, tennis, soccer and wrestling.

Mr. Wannan was a cofounder of the local Interstate Athletic Conference and a co-owner of Camp Netimus for Girls in Milford, Pa.

At a testimonial dinner in 1958, Robert S. Lyle, then headmaster of the school, called Mr. Wannan "an able coach, a distinguished leader, a builder of character, a man of high ideals . . ." When Mr. Wannan retired two years later, he was presented a citation terming him "one of the school's most prized traditions."

The Wannan Lounge in the Sidwell Friends Activities Building was named in his honor.

Survivors include his wife, Gertrude, of the home in Kensington; a son, Charles W. Jr., of Silver Spring; a daughter, Mrs. Roy M. Snyder Jr., of Jamison, Pa., and seven grandchildren.

The family suggests that expressions of sympathy be in the form of contributions to the Charles W. (Pop) Wannan Memorial Fund at Sidwell Friends School.