We are encouraging each student at NC State to take eight credits of health and exercise studies from our 100 and/or 200 level activity courses before graduation. Currently, students are required to take just two credits of health and exercise studies to graduate. We hope to motivate and encourage students to go beyond what’s required and truly make a commitment to physical fitness.
United States colleges and universities that require physical education are dwindling, a trend that is troublesome for a nation that needs to promote more exercise, not less. Over 90% of all U.S. universities required physical education classes for graduation prior to 1970; currently, that number is less than 60%. NC State remains a leader in health and fitness instruction by being one of those universities to require two credits of health and exercise studies for graduation. We are uniquely qualified to lead this effort based on our department’s nationally-recognized Basic Instruction Program (BIP) that has been in existence since 1923.
It is generally reported that nearly half of all college students do not participate in regular physical activity, although research has long supported the benefits of exercise. Among them are a decreased risk of developing heart disease, diabetes, and obesity. Other benefits include improved cardiovascular endurance, muscle endurance, muscle strength, and flexibility. Additionally, research suggests that regular exercise can decrease stress, improve self-concept, provide an outlet for socializing, and decrease symptoms of depression. More recently, exercise has been shown to not only lead to “six-pack” abs, but to help you improve your grades! That’s right, regular exercise can also improve brain function.
As you begin to think about your academic schedule, make a commitment to your mind, body, and spirit and sign up for a health and exercise studies class. You may want to take an activity class right before your most academically challenging class of the day, or you may want a physical education class at the end of your day to help you unwind. Choose an activity that you really enjoy or one that you’ve always wanted to learn. The Department of Health and Exercise Studies offers 75 different activity courses ranging from required 100-level fitness courses to horseback riding.
Here’s our challenge to you: Be academically fit and physically fit when you leave NC State! Once you’ve completed your fourth class you’ll qualify to receive a free water bottle. After you’ve completed your eighth class, come to Carmichael Gym, room 2000 and claim your free T-shirt to commemorate your accomplishment!