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Mitchell Vleminckx

Mrs. Cramer

Period 2

College Comp. I

24 March 2017

Healthy Living, Easy Learning

In the early 1700s physical exercise has started to show health benefits to humans. Ever

since these findings, exercise has been common sense to several people for living a healthy

lifestyle. Exercise has been entirely beneficial to humans, which is why humans adapted into

physical education programs. These physical education programs help improve health within

schools and communities. Recent studies have supported that physical activity can help benefit

students' grades and improve learning. Several schools have physical education programs, but

they are not taken as seriously as they should be. Some schools have the option not to take a gym

class, while some schools only have it a few times a week. Physical education should be

increased or intensified within schools to promote better overall physical and mental health for

students, which can help improve grades and school success.

Daily exercise has a huge impact on human health that several people do not pay

attention to, especially teenagers who are not participating in sports. Regular exercises for human

has shown major health benefits that can help minimize the chances of developing chronic

diseases or health issues. Briefly, exercise can do the following for humans: "control weight,

reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease, reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes and metabolic
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syndrome, reduce risk of some cancers, strengthen bones and muscles, and improve mental

health and mood" (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention). These are just a few of the basic

effects exercise has proven for a good healthy life. Increasing or intensifying physical education

programs for school will help control obesity and will in general improve overall health.

Students do not need to be in tip-top shape to be considered healthy, people can have larger body

types and still be healthy with regular exercise. Exercise is good for every system within the

human body to a certain extent. Regular exercise can promote good heart health to students in

school. The heart is the engine of the body, which supplies the body with oxygenated blood.1

Most common chronic illness are related to heart and cardiovascular disease, not including to

mental illness or cancers for other chronic illness. Regular exercise can help improve heart

health. Recent studies have shown that interval training is often tolerated well in people with

heart disease, and it can produce significant benefits (Centers for Disease Control and

Prevention). Overall, aerobic exercise in physical education programs can help to improve heart

health and endurance and aid in weight loss. Strength training can improve muscle strength and

endurance, make it easier to do daily activities, slow disease-related declines in muscle strength,

and provide stability to joints (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention). If daily exercise is

introduced to every student, then the overall physical health of the school will increase. Obesity

within a school can be more controlled by daily physical activity.

First off, regular exercise has obviously proven to be beneficial for physical health, but

daily exercise has positive effects on mental health, especially for the developing minds of

students. Improving mental health can help improve grades and learning styles for students.

1 Metaphor- This compared the heart to an engine


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Increasing physical education in schools can help with brain development, which in theory can

help students achieve better grades. "Regular exercise can have a profoundly positive impact on

depression, anxiety, ADHD, and mental health issues. It also relieves stress, improves memory,

helps you sleep better, and boosts overall mood" (Robinson). Controlling these factors for

students can greatly impact their overall grades. Exercise sharpens memory and thinking. "The

same endorphins that make you feel better can help you concentrate and feel mentally sharp for

tasks at hand. Exercise also stimulates the growth of new brain cells and helps prevent age-

related decline."(Robinson). Endorphins are like natural drugs for the brain, that alter moods and

enhance brain activity.2 Studies have shown when comparing physically active students to non-

physically active students, that the physically active students will score higher on certain types of

tests compared to non-physically active students. There was study done in the University of

Illinois on 9 and 10-year-old boys and girls. It tested 24 of the several physically active children

and 24 of the least physically active children on a treadmill, to test their aerobic fitness and

memorization tasks. The researchers used two different learning techniques. One session had the

children memorize the names of the regions on the map. The second session had the children

match the regions names and the specific regions where they belong. The next day the children

were asked to recall everything they learned in the sessions. "The results showed the children

who were in better aerobic condition significantly outperformed the less-fit group, remembering

about 40 percent of the regions' names accurately, compared with barely 25 perfect accuracy for

the out-of-shape kids" (Reynolds). Increasing physical education in schools can help improve the

memory of students and in theory improve their grades, promoting better school success.

2 Simile- This is comparing endorphins to natural drugs, using the word like
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First and foremost, physical activity does improve mental health and learning skills in

students, but as the day goes on, students are participating in the same amount of physical

activity. Throughout the day, all students do is walk to class and sit at desks. This is exerting the

same amount of energy to walk place to place. Also, there is only a couple days of gym class that

lasts one period. This is also allowing kids to be engaged in the same amount of physical activity.

There was a study conducted by researchers at Peninsula Medical School. This study tested the

physical activity of 206 students in three schools. One is a fancy private school and the other two

are normal public schools. The students were given ActiGraphs to track their physical activity

during each day. "Kids at the first school, an expensive private academy, got an average of 9.2

hours per week of scheduled P.E. Kids at the other two schools- one in a village near Plymouth

and the other an

urban school- got just 2.4 hours and 1.7 hours of P.E. per week, respectively" (Cloud). The

results showed that by the end of the day, all the students participated in the same amount of

physical activity. Even though the fancy private school students had more exercise by 3 o'clock,

the public school children had about the same before they went to sleep at night (Cloud).

Meanwhile, the exercise being done during the day is not enough to have positive effects

on the body. Gym class needs to be mandatory and less infrequent so there can be an increase of

physical activity. This would allow for a decrease in obesity and an increase in students learning

skills and overall health. Test score would go up and school success will thrive. Physical

education classes need to be mandatory because they have positive effects on students.

On the other hand, physical education classes have caused overweight students to feel

ashamed and self conscience about their bodies. This leads to depression and anxiety. In the gym

locker rooms students experience bullying and vandalism to their belongings. " Kids are sexually
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harassed, body shamed, put down, molested, encouraged to fight, encouraged to compete, spit

on, shoved in showers against their will and forced to change in bathroom stalls for fear of the

above."(Brooks). This is causing students to dislike physical education and avoid it at all costs.

For these reasons, daily gym class causes more of a harmful effect. This leads to more fear and

anxiety for overweight students.

With this being said, if students took gym class more seriously it would benefit their view

on their bodies because they would lose weight. Physical education has the potential to reduce

the stress and anxiety that gym class brings. If students participated, then their overall self-

esteem would be improved. "Regular activity is an investment in your mind, body, and soul.

When it becomes habit, it can foster your sense of self-worth and make you feel strong and

powerful. Youll feel better about your appearance and, by meeting even small exercise goals,

youll feel a sense of achievement."(Robinson). If taken more seriously more students would feel

this way, eliminating body shaming for students.

Once and for all, physical education should be increased or intensified within schools to

promote better overall physical and mental health for students, which can help improve grades

and school success. Physical education is essential in everyday life because it helps the mental

and physical health of students, which will allow for students to improve grades and school

success. Increasing and intensifying physical education programs will lower the chances of any

chronic diseases. Removing physical education will not benefit a school at all. Exercise has

shown positive benefits since the 1700s. New things about exercise and human health are still

being discovered to this day. The sky is the limit when it comes to learning about the human

body.3

3 Hyperbole- This is an exaggeration about how much can be discovered about human health and the body.
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Works Cited

Brooks, Sean M. "Why Physical Education Contributes to Violence in School." Edutopia. N.p.,

n.d. Web. 14 Mar. 2017.

Cloud, John. "Why Kids' Exercise Matters Less Than We Think." Time. Time Inc., 13 May 2009.

Web. 14 Mar. 2017.

N/A. "Physical Activity and Health." Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Centers for

Disease Control and Prevention, 04 June 2015. Web. 14 Mar. 2017.

Reynolds, Gretchen. "How Physical Fitness May Promote School Success." The New York

Times. The New York Times, 18 Sept. 2013. Web. 14 Mar. 2017

Robinson, Lawrence. "The Mental Health Benefits of Exercise." The Mental Health Benefits of

Exercise: The Exercise Prescription for Depression, Anxiety, Stress, and More.

Collaboration with Harvard Health Publications, 3 Jan. 2017. Web. 14 Mar. 2017
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