The Failure Of The American Educational System

sportsinamerica.jpgJames A. Michener might be a name familiar to those of you who like to read - he's written many fine books, including 'Sayonara', 'Hawaii', and 'Texas' for example… But one book that I read long ago sticks in my mind. (which, of course, is the goal of any good author!) He detailed in __Sports in America__ how our educational system brought us up with sports that very few will ever continue to play once past High School or College. Oh, we'll have the occasional company softball game… but sports that people can play for the rest of their lives are generally not taught in our educational system. A few are, there are the occasional Golf or Tennis classes being taught.

I've gotten lucky with learning a sport that I can practice the rest of my life… I've been rather fortunate in having had the chance to start learning Judo while still in High School, and it has definitely been good to me (health wise) over the years. But Judo is hardly the type of sport that most people would enjoy.

I really don't have any suggestions… other than perhaps to look into sports that are not quite so team oriented. After all - who wants to gather up a dozen of their friends each time they want to work out? This puts the finger on the problem that most sports have… and the problem with our educational system in concentrating on these sorts of sports.

But as a society, our problems are even worse… according to the latest news reports that I've seen, one third of our children are obese!1) Did you know that only a few states now require physical education in elementary, middle, and high school students? That's a sad commentary… isn't it?

And even the students who do participate in physical education, only a third are actually physically active.2) So what good is our educational system doing for students when it comes to health? My thought is that they are being failed by our educational system. I realize that culture is changing America into a far more sedentary life, but isn't education supposed to educate us?

There was clearly a time long ago when physical education wasn't nearly so important… after all, our grandparents probably had to milk the cows, feed the chickens, and so forth… but today - kids drive or take the bus - and when home, sit in front of the T.V. or a computer.

Today, a sport such as Judo, or any other sport that you can do for the rest of your life, is more important than ever. Have you found yours? Bicycling appears to be a very good choice for many people – it doesn't cost much to get a decent bike, and the wear & tear on your joints & muscles is quite minimal compared to most outdoor activities and sports. It can be done at all ages, and will keep you healthy.

But whatever choice you make - it seems that it's up to us as individuals to find our sport that we can practice for life - as we aren't learning it from school.

And that's a shame.

Society | Education | Sports

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