Adults Do Sports Too · 29 March 2013

Sometimes students cannot believe that their teachers can actually do sports.

We got to go on an outing while we were out of town for a FIRST Robotics regional competition. It was a social event where students and mentors could interact with others from around the region to watch a movie, hang out, or engage in some physical exercise. Naturally, I chose to exercise even though I had just worn jeans.

At first, I played a couple games of dodgeball. It was not quite like I remember it being in elementary school where it was fast and furious. Back then, people got out quickly because everybody wanted to get up to the line and just pummel somebody else with the ball. People at the FIRST social were much more strategic. And much too patient. I was out quickly because I wanted to stay up near the line and risk a bit more than most of the others.

I think the students were surprised that teachers and other adults would actually play dodgeball. I know my students were excited to see me jump in during the dodgeball matches. They even wanted me on their team thinking I might be able to help rather than wanting me on the other team to pummel me with the balls. (Unfortunately, I disappointed them getting hit quickly and not knocking anybody out during my short time playing.)

After the games of dodgeball, I decided to shoot some baskets. Even though I was just in my jeans, it was not long before I tired of shooting and asked if anybody wanted to play at least a half court game. We ended up playing six short games of three on three. It was a fun time of running and jumping, shooting and passing. I got plenty of exercise in the hour or so of playing.

The students were surprised that the old guys could actually play basketball too. I think they figured they could take us since they had height and youth on their side. We had a great time playing those short games. Especially, since we took at least half of the games and nobody got hurt.

Young people tend to think that older people do not engage in such strenuous activities such as dodgeball and basketball. I hope that the other mentors and I crushed that stereotype and helped them realize that fitness is a lifelong process just like learning. We might not have been the last ones standing in dodgeball or won every game of basketball, but we were out there with the kids enjoying the physical activities with them.

It was great to be able to show kids that adults, especially teachers, do sports too.

© 2013 Michael T. Miyoshi

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