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Opinion: To Swim or Not to Swim?

By Shannon Alfonso and Pedro Villa

What is the one class where you get to take a break from learning and focus on your own physical activity? If you answered aquatics, you deserve an A+. Freshman students at WPHS are required to take an aquatics class. Although many students are in favor of eliminating aquatics, we feel it introduces a new atmosphere and promotes the importance of physical exercise.

We all enjoy swimming because of how fun it is and appreciate how different aquatics is from typical physical education classes. If it were to be eliminated, it is unfair to the students that do enjoy the class. If this were to happen, they would be subjected to regular, boring physical education classes. It has nothing but beneficial.

While some may argue that aquatics is troublesome due to some students not being able to swim, that is precisely why we need it. The class covers a skill that we all need to learn: swimming. There are multiple cases of adolescents who have died of unintentional drowning. This can be solved with an aquatics course that enforces the ability to learn how to swim and practice the lifesaving skill. Without aquatics, and physical education itself, our lives can be at risk. By learning this, we can be responsible for saving someone's life or even our own.

Aquatics promotes the importance of physical activity. According to New York State guidelines, two credits are required for students to successfully complete high school. To be realistic, New York State focuses primarily on physical activity and the importance of it due to this requirement amongst all high schoolers. Students stress over the little temporary annoyances presented by aquatics, but don’t zoom out and see the positive benefits in keeping aquatics as something mandatory.

Swimming offers many health benefits such as enhancing endurance, balance, strength, and flexibility. The class introduces how physical exercise does not have to be a burden by offering an activity that most students enjoy. As a freshman currently enrolled and as a past student of the aquatics course, the aquatics program has influenced the way we think about physical education.

Aquatics teaches us the lessons of fitness and helps us achieve a happier, and healthier life. It is important that you encourage others about the importance of physical education. There is no limit to how much physical education we need, so the necessity of aquatics adds to necessary life skills. No matter what, the aquatics program is here to stay.

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