P.E classes arrive back in full swing post-COVID

Lucas Corea, Sports Writer

 Over the course of the last year and a half, there is no question that our daily lives have been significantly impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic. The virus has changed the way the world operates,  specifically and arguably most for students. Unlike in the past, masks are required throughout the school day, lunch dismissals are staggered, and certain water fountains have been taped off to prevent possible spread of the virus. 

 These new restrictions put in place around the county have certainly taken a toll on the daily operations of P.E. classes. 

“The hardest thing as you well know is wearing a mask. We just aren’t getting the oxygen we need. This is physical education,” P.E and health teacher Coach John Fahrner said. However, in spite of the covid protocols in place, Coach Fahrner is making the most out of his PE classes. “It hasn’t affected my mission statement of life, hasn’t affected my values, hasn’t affected my principles so life goes on,” Fahrner said.
As for students, some definitely agree that having to work with the Covid-19 protocols during P.E. can be difficult. “…when we use masks it’s hard to breathe because we have to run and play lots of sports and exercise,”Senior Jefferson Berman-Govine said. “Masks impede a lot of the things that we’d normally be able to do without our masks.” 

Luckily for some, outdoor classes have allowed them to remain mask-free while enjoying some quality sports time. These sports include soccer, as well as net sports, and flag football. 

“Soccer they can take their masks off. Inside it’s affecting us,”  Coach Fahrner said. 

Tennis class, an outdoor net sport, is also mask free but practices the suggested spacing protocols. “We are still distanced but it’s a tennis class so we’re automatically on other sides of the court,” Freshman Zander Schieb said., “Outside we don’t have to wear a mask because, well, it’s outside.” 

Though much has changed, P.E. class still offers some of the benefits from the pre-covid era. It remains an outlet for students to move around, destress and relax a bit during the day. P.E teachers still want students to stay motivated for physical education even amid the pandemic. “To play, to recreate your energy is recreation. You must recreate your energy every day. So you must put recreation at the forefront of what you’re doing every day,” Fahrner said

However, P.E. class isn’t as relaxing as it used to be for some students. “Only sometimes. Because of the mask, I can’t breathe really well. It starts to stress me out more because I can’t breathe right,” Berman-Govine said. However, he acknowledges the importance of wearing masks. “I feel safe because if there are people that sneeze or something else that could promote transmission, the masks really help protect everyone else.” 

It is true that P.E. looks and feels a little different nowadays and may not be operating at its fullest potential. Though, with the help of hard working coaches and flexible students,  the classes still have the means to serve as safe spaces for students to declutter their minds, and get their bodies moving.