Sudden death reflects hidden perils in college physical education

By Liang Tao
0 Comment(s)Print E-mail CRI, December 2, 2016
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The death of a senior at Wuhan University past week has been raising new questions about physical education exams at post-secondary institutions in China.

The student died after apparently over-exerting himself. Attempts to revive him were unsuccessful. A tragic incident, and one which is sadly not that uncommon. A review of deaths on college campuses over the past few years shows an unusually high number of deaths connected to physical exertion.

It's inevitable that cases like this create a lot of public attention.

A lot of the media focus in this latest case in Wuhan has been on how the parents are to be compensated, and how the matter is being disposed of.

But the more important thing that we should be paying attention to is how to prevent these types of incidents from repeating themselves.

One area to look toward is proper care for the students themselves.

In today's modern society, most Chinese students do not get enough regular exercise. Hours sitting in-front of computer and TV screens, or in the library studying, has left many of them unfit. Most of these students don't exercise regularly. And Physical Education courses in universities don't offer much in the way of help on that front. Phys-Ed classes are considered an easy credit, and don't often require much attendance to pass.

Another area to consider is the current college physical examination mechanism.

Testing of the student's physical health is supposed to be simply used as a measurement. But its purpose is to launch a long-term monitoring of college student's health, and to get them to participate in campus sports activities and carry out regular physical exercise. But many colleges and universities have not taken the proper steps to ensure the students are exercising until a tragedy happens.

Without proper guidance and supervision, physical exams can be a death trap for some students.

The physical examination should be a measure to scientifically grasp the physical condition of students, and taking it as the basis urge them to participate in necessary and regular physical exercise.

This is going to require authorities to strengthen the physical health education and guidance among college students.

If they better understand the importance of their own physical health, the more invested they will be in their own physical training.

Secondly, colleges and universities need to improve their sports programs. This is going to require a new evaluation system, which should include regular physical check-ups. This should also include a physical education credit and monitoring system to ensure the students are keeping up with their physical training.

Last but not the least, universities need to get rid of their traditionally loose management of sports and physical health and work out a scientific education approach focusing on physical training, practical ability and social skills.

Educators also need to ensure they are providing the proper skills and knowledge to their students when it comes to their physical health.

Only by doing this can we help students fall in love with campus life, as well as help them plot their own future course in a responsible manner.

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