Editorial: Changes for Gym Swim

Our Position: LTHS gym swim should only be taught freshman year

The words “gym swim” send shivers down most LT students spines because of the memorable experience they had in the course. On the first day of gym swim,students are required to get in their bathing suits and then sit on cold bleachers while the teacher explains the plans for the day. Not only is this uncomfortable, it can also be embarrassing for students with insecurities. At times students have to put on old swim caps that are particularly unflattering.
Once students are dressed and ready they have to slowly trek into the freezing cold pool with their classmates and wait in their “squad” lines to take attendance. Often while waiting for attendance to be taken students are shivering because of the rooms chill temperature. After class students are given an extremely small towel and seven minutes to change and then go about the rest of their day.
Gym swim has been around for many years before us and the gym swim programs have advanced greatly since then and have become an important part of highschool. Freshman and sophomore year LT students have to get used to the cold SC pool to participate in gym swim. This course is a requirement both freshman and sophomore year and the time in the pool lasts about four weeks.The course takes place either in the beginning of the year or during the winter, depending on who the gym teacher is. If your class is swimming during the winter many students end up dreading swimming because the chilly temperature of the pool and the cold air is bound to leave students shivering .
LT’s requirement for gym swim is that students are obligated to take the course as part of their gym track freshman and sophomore year and as a junior or senior students can choose a gym track that has water games or one with no activities in the water. Swimming is an important life skill to have, but it does not need to be taught after freshman year. The skills that freshman year swim provides us with are supplementary enough to help us through our adult lives. In swim class we are taught survival techniques and basic strokes that can be used in many situations.
As a freshman gym swim should be required but swim should not be a requirement after freshman year. Additionally the track that contains swim should be the only track to contain water activities so students who wish to play water games can choose that track. Students often get stuck with a track that has swimming in it and end up hating the entire class because of the swim unit. In the past students have done just about anything to get out of gym swim; many will go to the nurse instead of going to class. Swimming helps save lives but LTHS gym swim covers this area well enough freshman year that students should not be required to complete the unit again in high school.