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The Contender
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Physical exercise against knowledge in school to prevent diseases and money loss

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 2/3/2015 Category: Health
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 941 times Debate No: 69348
Debate Rounds (3)
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Votes (1)




Anxiety in adults is bad for our society as a lot of resources and billions of dollars are used to fix anxiety and depression in the adult population.
Here is where exercise in school comes in: I think it is time to deal with the source of anxiety which is the fact that children sit down too much in school and mainly uses the brain to workout problems. This way of living will inevitably cause stress due to TOO much thinking, and a way to fix this would be to have the children to do more physical exercise in other words using the body instead of the brain to workout problems. I totally think it would be worth "sacrificing" a bit of head-knowledge in order to restore the well-being of our lives. This could be done by replacing many subjects in school with physical exercise. And if we do so I"m convinced that the sacrificed knowledge of the younger population will be gained if not increased, after a few years with the new healthy minds.
This will prevent billions of dollars being used on medicine and other treatments for multiple illnesses each year.


Ha I thought this debate would be fun so I took it up.

Anyways, while studies have proven that exercise does physiologically relieve stress due to endorphins being released etc., you are assuming that the root of all of the students stress at school is the act of gaining knowledge or exercising ones knowledge in class. Since you cannot pinpoint the cause of anyones stress due to the many factors that play into this, your argument is kind of invalid. You are also leaving out the many people who use school as a stress reliever. The people who get joy from expanding themselves intellectually. If we do take what your saying to be a truth, you will stress those people out. You are also forgetting about the student's whose stress comes from exercise. If they exercise more, then they will contribute to those exaggerated claims you maid earlier lol. Lastly you will be causing stress to the parents of these students, and if I may add it seems as though your crazy statistics are based off adult stress instead of children's stress. If their children are unable to function properly in society due to the lack of knowledge (balancing a check book, reading a contract, driving a car etc,) then many of their parents will be upset because they would either be swallowed up by the system, or stuck in their parents house. If we are speaking in extremes like you are then this trauma will ad more stress to the student who never received the knowledge necessary to live in this society. And they too will be stress, thus creating a never ending cycle of stress. Did I mention that the teachers will also be stressed due to the parents complaining about their childrens' intellect. And what about the politicians and higher-ups who put this sort of rule into effect. Wouldn't they be stressed because other opposing scholars and communities would be bashing them left and right and wouldn't vote for them, causing the politicians stress?

So in conclusion, replacing knowledge with a physical supplement will cause more stress and leading to all of your exaggerated claims like money loss and disease. LOL
Debate Round No. 1


Ahem, interesting views.
I guess we agree on the one very important factor that PHYSICAL exercise really does relieve stress.
Still you don't think that more physical exercise in school would be beneficial as it deteriorates the intellect of the student.
Studies show that: "It has also been proven that when students are involved in a physical activity program, there is an improved rate of academic learning per unit of class time (Taras, 2005) and that increased time spent in physical education does not negatively effect student scores. A study done in France increased its physical education time to 8 hours per week, reducing time devoted to academic subjects. The students in this experiment were physically and psychologically healthier and had increased academic performance when compared to the control group (Sallis, 1999)."
So by replacing hours with thinking while sitting in the classroom with hours doing physical exercises, will at some point benefit the individual and society on multiple levels.

As you rightfully said there are multiple factors contributing to stress. The main one although is the fact that we use our heads so much in school and take that habit home with us until we finally let go of our thoughts and fall asleep.
And as you said, I cannot completely pinpoint what causes stress but as proven above exercise does relieve it and contribute to the individuals intellect, now why is it that physical exercise should't be greater implemented in school life?
More studies show that only 8% of elementary schools, 6.4% of middle schools, and 5.8% of high schools provide daily physical education to all of its students (SHPPS, 2000). In addition, 20 percent of all elementary schools in the U.S. have abolished recess in favor of increased classroom time under pressure to improve student achievement (Satcher, 2005). Less than 25% of children are engaged in 30 minutes of any type of daily physical activity (Satcher, 2005).

You say that it's an exaggerated claim that stress leads to disease and money lost on medicine? Hundreds of studies on the internet will tell you that this is happening.: "Anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the U.S., affecting 40 million adults in the United States age 18 and older (18% of U.S. population)." and "Anxiety disorders cost the U.S. more than $42 billion a year, almost one-third of the country's $148 billion total mental health bill, according to "The Economic Burden of Anxiety Disorders," a study commissioned by ADAA (The Journal of Clinical Psychiatry, 60(7), July 1999)."

To say that exercise will further contribute to stress might be true in some cases, but children who sit down up to 8 hours a day in school will without a doubt experience positive impacts.


Granting that physical exercise relieves stress in general I will continue to restate the fact that exercise is not the solution for all. Again if I'm understanding correctly, your arguement it Replacing brain time with physical exercise. Now I do agree that exercise can relieve stress for some which is why schools have clubs, sports teams, intermurals and of course the allotted gym time. Since we aren't specifically debating about the schools that have reduced exercise time and more knowledge time I will only acknowledge your statement on that purely for the sake of example. Since we are debating implementing more exercise in a broader sense we cannot assume the extreme (a school that has a lot of exercise time and vice versa) when debating. So, I absolutely agree with the affects of exercise on students and school behavior because for SOME, exercise is the answer. For this select group of children though, the school may have clubs, sports and intermurals that they can relieve their stress in after school. So instead on "replacing" hours learning,, the students that feel it is imperative to exercise have the option to join clubs, sports etc. In doing so, this child would have even more exercise time everyweek. Including sports practice, that on average practices two days a week for two hours will get a guaranteed four hours of exercise time. Add these hours to the one hour gym period that is maybe three times a week will put exercise time up to 4-7 hours a week. Now lets include any games that the child as to perform in etc. To make a sweeping statement saying that all children will benefit from extra exercise time that may or may not help the majority of the class and is quite frankly absurd. You should leave the option for extra exercise time up to the student, there are other possible factors of stress and different stress relievers in children. Which brings me to a realization: You're excluding children that relieve stress in a different way. Although exercise physiologically releases endorphins that combat stress, there are many other activities that have the same effect. It is up to the student and his or her family to decide what that is and facilitate that. The schools only provide resources to do so, not force you to use them. You also keep giving me statistics for the adults in america and not children when talking about mental health. To use such a statistic and then say this is this can happen with children is also a stretch.

The percentages that you are giving are far to low to be implementing such a great change across the board. Should those children in those respective schools want to exercise, I am sure that they can join a sport or club to make up for their deficit. Instead of increasing physical education that replaces classroom time and takes the focus off of learning I suggest we encourage sports and clubs for children who want to exercise more and relieve stress. Not introduce another variable in these students lives.
Debate Round No. 2


I agree very much that the schools should put more emphasis on physical activity, also outside of school, sadly this almost never happens. It's not as if history teachers stops teaching history for 10 minutes to inform the children about exercise. And even if the teachers were to do so, the students who are not athletically conditioned would have a hard time finding a sport to attend, surely this would cause despair in many teens as they will have very little guidance. I really think it's unsympathetic to say that teens should simply just attend sports in their free time, it's not that easy for many many children, unsurprisingly as they are conditioned to sit and listen for multiple hours a day.
And to your argument that physical exercise is not suited for all is absolutely unheard of. The only reason it could be wrong for someone to exercise would be if the person did it the wrong way. Now this adds to the argument that physical exercise should be taught more in school, so that the students learn about exercise from an experienced person and in that way understands which exercises he/she should do to claim the essential benefits, that we just established physical exercise provides, so that the student can prosper with a fuller richer and healthier life.
To believe that children won't have the same physiological response to excessive stress as adults is absurd.
I also fail to comprehend why you would devalue physical education, even when it seems like you understand the remarkable effects physical activity can have. So knowing how the body works will give the students great tools to approach life with, especially compared with the knowledge you gain from let's say math class.
To me it's no wonder that 121 million people in the world suffer from depression, knowing that we are neglecting the importance of knowing how the body works. 30% of the US population suffers from depression making the country one of the most depressed in the world. This leads me back to my first round where I suggest making changes to the children's schooling/conditioning in terms of informing the children about how their body works and how to develop themselves in a healthier manner.


Knowing how the body works is already included in your core science/ health class offered in school, so saying that your extra exercise class is integral to learning how the body works in school is false.

You"re assuming that:
The root of depression in adults and stress in children is too much thinking in their adolescence.
Exercise is the best way to tackle these problems because of its physiological benefits.
It's harder for children to take up extracurriculars in comparison to random exercise replacing of their core classes. This judgement is SOLELY up to the student and his or her family.

You"re neglecting freedom of choice by forcing them in a class that they might want to be in because you think it would be better for them.
It would be wrong for a student to exercise because you feel it"s beneficial if they do not want to exercise. If we use your logic you may as well force sex on people because of its physiological benefits.

Insuring prosperity in students by adding an extra gym class & replacing core classes is highly illogical. We live in a society where you need to balance check books, read contracts, file taxes,pursue a career, etc. If you want children to live a richer & healthier life you should want them to become well versed in their core classes in school so that they can have the knowledge to function properly in this society .

"sacrificing a bit of head-knowledge in order to restore the well-being of our lives" & "replacing MANY subjects in school with physical exercise". If any one is devaluing education, it is you since you want replace the building blocks of ones knowledge in their academic career for a supplemental exercise class
Core classes will positively effect test scores, because they are learning the core subjects that are on these tests. Why sacrifice this?

You"re inconsistent & introducing a new topic: a health and wellness class, not a phys. ed exercise class. You cannot conflate the two because you never introduced that in the beginning

I would also like to point out that pro never refuted the the negative effects I presented in round 2.

Schools should focus their energies on encouraging extracurriculars, so that students have the option to relieve stress in their own way. Since Pro never refuted my effects in round 1, one can reasonably conclude that adding a supplementary gym class will do more harm than good because the only benefit she stated was the chance that they will have a "healthier and prosperous life" because they exercise more. There are activities that give the same effect. It should be left up to the students and their respective families, friends, mentors etc. to cultivate them. You"re taking away from students who value their class time and forcing the majority conform to minority interests. Pro never addressed my appeal to how low the percentages are in round 2. School is here to help students cultivate the knowledge that will help them function properly in this society.

Vote Con!
Debate Round No. 3
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1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by Proving_a_Negative 3 years ago
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Total points awarded:20 
Reasons for voting decision: Both sides had convincing arguments and rebuttals. Spelling and grammar were essentially the same. Pro used sources.