Beating the “HEAT” in Physical Education.

Ever wonder how the kids make it through a Physical Education class during the month of September?  Well, here are our strategies on how we BEAT THE HEAT..

When focusing on the goal of each class engaging in vigorous activity, we must take into consideration the weather for that day.  For example, currently grades 6-8 are engaged in Volleyball (girl’s) and Soccer (boy’s), both activities require a lot of effort, movement and engagement while being outside in the sun for a considerable amount of time.  In order to combat the heat of the day, we use 3 simple strategies:

 Strategy 1: Hydration:  Encouraging students to bring their own water bottle or hydro flask to P.E. is a must.  We teach students to moderate their water intake. Students are given frequent water breaks to make sure that we our doing our best to stay hydrated through the class period.

Strategy #2: Short Activity Bursts:  Skill development and drills are timed, and set to maximize output through shorter activities.  Our goal during these hot days is to figure out how to get the most opportunity for each student to grow through participation, while being mindful of the importance of breaking for hydration and some quick time in the shade. For example, rather than working out for 20 minutes before a water break, we cut it down to every 5-7minutes.

Strategy #3: Education: We take the time to educate the students about the importance of proper hydration throughout each day.  That water consumption should be regular and balanced to keep their body hydrated. Remember, if you are feeling thirsty, your body is telling you that it has already entered a state of dehydration.  Preloading your body with water consumption is just like filling up your gas tank in your car before a long trip. You would never start that road trip with your fuel light flashing, yet we regularly see kids start their activities while already thirsty. A great formula for daily water consumption for the average person is to take your body weight, divide it by two and that number is how many ounces of water you should consume daily. For example, 200lbs divided by 2 equals 100, so at that weight, the average person should consume 100oz of water per day.

So as you can see, with these three strategies in place, we are able to run an educational yet vigorous physical education program; while maintaining proper hydration to help with success for students battling the heat.

Mr. Harrison, 6-8 grade Physical Education Department