We actually had a good amount of variety in our high school gym classes thinking back. Lots of different non-contact sports and what not. You were required to take it for something like 4 semesters. I don't remember it being all that strenuous. The only requirement for getting a decent grade was pretty much showing up, acting like you were participating, and being able to do something like 6 laps around the parking lot on the last day of the semester (something that was about a mile and a half or so, and they gave you the better part of an hour to do it).
Also, bowling. Bowling class was awesome. Almost 2 hours, and we went to the alley, ate our lunch there and had fun. Good stuff.
Anyway there were questions no?
Is physical education even education?
Not really. In my case I like to think I did better in my classes when I got a break to get up and move around during the day, can't say that was the case for everyone though.
Should we 'teach' gym in schools?
I like the idea of having a "gym" class be part of some fitness/health education. Leaning how to take care of yourself and stuff; physical activity being part of that. I'm not sure there's not necessarily a bunch of "learning" all the time. But people into adulthood will take fitness classes at a gym, get exercise, learn yoga, or something. Not necessarily a subject that needs to be graded harshly, or required every semester or anything.
Should the feds mandate minimum levels of PE offerings in public schools?
I have no problem with different states having their own required levels of "gym" for their schools. Though I might have to prod some people to exercise more if national health care ever becomes a reality and I'm having to pay for some lazy slob's triple-bypass.