Why Teenagers Need P.E.

The opinions expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily represent the views of The Prowler. 

Have you ever felt stressed? Overwhelmed? Unable to focus? Well, I have a solution.  Most kids at de Toledo spend about 85 percent of their day at school, sitting and working in a classroom, and attention spans these days last no longer than 60 seconds.

How can this problem be fixed? P.E.! Physical Education gives kids a chance to play games, sports, or just exercise for the sake of exercise, which can help your grades and your health.

Here are the four best reasons why we should have mandatory P.E. three days a week:

Better grades 

What teen doesn’t want better test scores? There are no magic pills that make you a genius, but research shows a connection between the benefits of exercise and academic achievement. According to “Exercise and the Brain: How Fitness Impacts Learning,” by Nancy Barile, “Across the country, research shows students with higher fitness scores also have higher test scores.”

Barile says the reason for this is that exercise “has a positive influence on memory, concentration, and classroom behavior.” 

deToledo’s Adian G. (‘26), says that when he lifts weights in the morning, it boosts his mood and focus.

Health Benefits

Not only can exercise help boost your focus in class, but exercise can also help prevent dementia and improve cognition, which is how well your brain functions. For people who start exercising earlier in life, the benefits begin immediately, and studies show that these benefits affect you positively later in life. Any exercise can be beneficial in life, but the people who start early in life– like, now!–have a brain like MEGAMIND. Don’t wait. Even without mandatory P.E.,  de Toledo has soccer, basketball, dance, swimming, and my personal favorite–ping pong (only for legends).

Helps With Stress

School can be stressful and overwhelming sometimes. This can result in a bad mood and feeling down. According to the Mayo Clinic, exercise is “meditation in motion.” When you play basketball, or swim, or dance, these activities can ultimately “help you stay calm, clear and focused in everything you do.” This is important because stress left unchecked can lead to depression and health problems.

It’s Fun!

Along with all the amazing benefits mentioned above, the greatest reason to exercise is FUN! Instead of spending your entire day sitting in a chair, you get to take a break and be active, spending quality time playing and hanging out with friends. Plus, if you’re having trouble focusing and have some extra energy, P.E. allows you to put that extra energy to use. And, yes, there are studies that prove just having fun is good for your health, too. 

This is why I think P.E. should be integrated into the daily schedule of teenagers at least three days a week.