Our Overweight Generation Essays

Submitted By Annoory1s
Words: 1936
Pages: 8

ENG 102
20 July 2013 Our Overweight Generation The current trending topic of childhood obesity in America has been flooding the news for the last couple of years. One in three U.S children are considered overweight or obese. Before the days of fast food and our current apathetic generation, this was hardly ever an issue. Many children ate home cooked meals and played outside until the streetlights turned on. Since it has become such a controversial issue, schools have had to develop new physical education programs to try to assist this obese generation. If mandatory P.E classes are not expanded or revised, the rate of child obesity will most likely not improve. We need to encourage children to become fit and active, to teach them the importance of staying healthy. Physical education classes are the best places to address this issue because the purpose of these classes are to stay in shape and learn how to live a healthy life, so we are going directly to the source. Schools enforcing regular exercise can teach children how key of a component it is to maintain a lean healthy body. Without these mandatory P.E classes, a large majority of children would not engage in consistent physical activity. I know children are not going to P.E classes everyday, which they should. When I was in Elementary school P.E was regulated every 3 days between art and music classes as well. Each school is different in the amount of weekly P.E classes they require, but not enough schools are basing it on the recommended amount of physical activity needed for a healthy lifestyle. According to the American Heart Association “At least 30 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity at least 5 days per week for a total of 150” is the amount of exercise recommended for us that we need to maintain a healthy lifestyle (AHA). If children need 30 minutes of exercise per day and gym classes are only twice a week, it is no wonder why we have the amount of overweight children that we do. Gym should be a mandatory daily class, just like a math or science class. Having healthy mind and body should be just as important. If these children cannot receive proper health influences at home, then school is by far the next best place for it. Many physical education programs today are mindless. The entire class period is designated to learning how to play different games and sports. This can be difficult and upsetting for the children who are not good at the particular sport or physically disabled and do not really have a way of playing. I believe an ideal physical education class would lay off the sports games and put more emphasis on actual exercise. If these children want to play extra sports there are always clubs and teams outside of school. These gym teachers should act more as these students’ personal trainers and work with each student individually to work out a plan to reach a certain weight, level of health, or muscle tone. Each student would have a special work out plan just for them. This way, students who have disabilities can work around them, accelerating in the areas of exercise that they actually can. “Conditions such as muscular dystrophy and cerebral palsy often impair a child's ability to participate in required exercises, movements or sports activities found in the traditional gym class. Rather than excluding children with special needs from gym class, public schools now offer adaptive fitness programs” (Rhinehart). Also this is better for the children who are usually too overweight or out of shape to participate in class games, they can go at their own paces. If students had their own individual workout plan classes would not need to be made every day. The teachers could assign students to do their workouts everyday at home making it so the parents would have to sign off on them. By getting these children’s parents involved, they could potentially create a better outcome of this