PE4Life Program Challenges Teens to Stay Healthy


Aching muscles. Dripping sweat. Anticipation for the next set. As the PE4Life students groaned, Coach Walden counted down, “Ready, set, go — lunges!”

“Our most important focus is understanding the importance of physical education and how it can be beneficial to our overall health,” Coach Walden said.

In the PE4Life program, students learn a wide variety of sports.

“Students enjoy soccer, volleyball, tennis, and basketball as well as the personal fitness exercises the most,” Coach Walden said. “The famous red ball is also a favorite. It can be used for a variety of activities.”

Some liked trying out new things.

“The students enjoy archery and disc golf the most because it’s something most haven’t done,” Coach East said.

They also enjoyed the more popular team sports.

“The majority of my students enjoy the staple sports, of course — basketball, football, soccer,” Coach Bowden said. “But surprisingly, many also enjoyed learning how to play golf.”

Others preferred staying in their comfort zones.

“Flag Football, soccer, and kickball are the preferred sports,” Coach Eveld said. “The students are comfortable in these activities and like the competitiveness.”

PE could be challenging.

“I believe the biggest challenge in PE is learning how to set reasonable health goals, overcome personal limits, and the desire to be stagnant in our personal health, and strive to achieve those goals,” Coach Walden said. “It is often more comfortable and convenient to sit and be satisfied; whereas, pushing oneself to improve their health requires time, dedication, and hard work.”

Beyond personal fitness goals, students faced other obstacles.

“Weight training involves safety issues, and frisbee football is challenging because some students do not know or understand it,” Coach Eveld said.

With only one gym and the tornado shelter for all coaches and over 100 students to share, it gets crowded.

“Any activity that has to be done while sharing space with other classes is a challenge due to the large numbers in a small area,” Coach East said.

It wasn’t all sunshine and rainbows.

“The golf unit we did presented some very big challenges such as space and resources, but I would have to say it was for sure the most rewarding,” Coach Bowden said.

The PE4Life program benefits students.

“Through PE4Life, we hope to spark interest in new activities and give students the knowledge to pursue an active lifestyle,” Coach Walden said.

Not only do teens learn how to stay in shape, but they also learn about the long-term benefits.

“PE4Life allows students to try a vast array of spots they normally would not have the chance to play,” Coach Bowden said. “Another big benefit is that this class teaches life fitness skills that can go way beyond their junior high years.”

Not only does Coach Walden want them to be active, but she wants them to learn a life lesson.

“I try to inspire my students to pursue an active lifestyle by setting an example in my personal health, providing opportunities for them to experience different activities, and giving them encouragement in their pursuit,” Coach Walden said.

Students need motivation to be active.

“I try to stay positive with the students,” Coach East said.

Coach Eveld stresses the importance of staying active and the benefits of physically fit.
“Being fit helps to stay healthy,” Coach Eveld said.

Coach Bowden tries to inspire his students by showing them that there are many different physical activities that can be done to improve and maintain their health and well-being.

“Sports are a gucci way to stay in shape,” Coach Bowden said.