Recently I have discovered that the school I am attending will not have a gym for two-and-a-half years. As a Grade 8 student I do not want to miss out on all the great things a gym offers.
School gymnasiums hold endless possibilities for students whether they want to burn some energy, play basketball with their friends or just get away from the pressure of making good grades. A gym is a good way to get out of your classroom and relax. It is well known that students who have five hours of physical activity a week have increased academic abilities and that the average teenager loses concentration after only 10 minutes of textbook studying.
If kids have a place to exercise at an early age they will make healthier life choices in the future. If students don’t have a chance to exercise, what is stopping them from involving themselves in drugs and alcohol? Some kids don’t have the opportunity to participate in other sports outside of school.
If our gym is demolished, what will they do with their spare time? If you visited our gym at lunch, you would find lots of students of all grades having fun playing their favourite sports together. When our gym is torn down, what options are there for all the students in the gym?
A gym is said to be the heart of a school. Why take that away from hundreds of students? A gym holds many different qualities to let students be part of their school. It builds social skills to let kids become more confident with their peers and with older students. A gym gives kids a taste of winning and also losing. They learn to play by the rules and to find leadership within them. The gym is a place where it doesn’t matter how much money you have, all you need is a pair of shoes and some energy.
A few months ago, I joined an after-school sport coached by a volunteer teacher. I had no hope for myself enjoying or succeeding at this sport, as I had no personal experience working as a team. In the last two months, I learned how important it was to communicate and play as a team. I learned to congratulate our team on a win and even on a loss. I learned the importance of being part of something and how crucial it was not to beat the opposing team but to beat your personal best.
Without a gym to allow kids to have this opportunity it would take away so many of the qualities I mentioned. Having a positive experience, like I did, encourages me, and hopefully others, to participate in the years to come. Of course, that’s only possible if we have a gym.