Several years ago ACU instituted a policy that ACU students must complete two exercise science courses and a Lifetime Wellness class. The goal of this requirement is very reasonable; ACU wants students to learn about health and wellness in practical ways. The timing was also perfect because the Student Recreation and Wellness Center was set to open and would provide space for a wide variety of fitness classes.
The problem with this rule is not the motivations behind it but that there is no way for students who are already exercising to opt out of the classes.
Student athletes spend hours practicing and conditioning each week. For many, playing a collegiate sport is the equivalent to having a job. These students spend hours exercising each week and must maintain good grades and any other extracurriculars on the side. Forcing these students to take exercise classes is a waste of their time because they are already active in their sport. Spending three hours a week to receive a one hour exercise credit that does not pertain to their degree should not be a requirement for student athletes.
There are also students who exercise and educate themselves about health issues on their own and do not need additional classes on the subject. ACU students run marathons and triathlons, they play intramurals and pick up games. Many students use the SRWC on a regular basis and take the classes offered there. It is unnecessary for ACU to require more physical activity from students who are already meeting standard exercise criteria.
The purpose of the SRWC is to provide space for students to exercise and socialize on their own. While on some levels it is good that ACU has made it a requirement for students to make exercise a part of their college experience, this requirement should not apply to students who are already doing this. One of the most important aspects of college is learning how to be an adult and take responsibility for your own life. The motives behind the exercise requirement seek to educate students about fitness but forcing these classes upon students who have already taken this responsibility upon themselves places an unnecessary burden on them.
The current exercise requirement needs to be adjusted to allow students who are already exercising to opt out of these classes so their time is not wasted.