Ms. Schurdak has been working as an administrator with this age group for over 20 years and is excited to join Pingry, having been struck “by the commitment of the Middle School faculty to educating middle schoolers… They are both serious and joyful about their work.”
The Pingry School’s Fitness Education Program emphasizes all aspects of a student’s physical well-being. Its mission is to educate each student to the importance of physical activity along with providing a positive, energetic, and safe environment in which to explore the various components of physical fitness.
Our teaching staff consists of certified strength and conditioning specialists with degrees in exercise sciences, qualified to answer most questions regarding fitness or nutrition. The Greig Center, where most of the classes take place, is considered one of the finest in the state. The program uses a hands-on methodology, where each student’s goals are taken into consideration and integrated into a balanced approach encompassing strength training, cardiovascular conditioning, and flexibility development. The training philosophy of The Pingry School is that there are no shortcuts, quick fixes, or gimmicks to promoting good health and wellness. We encourage all students to work to their potential in the safest manner possible.
Four areas stressed within each Fitness Course:
• Strength training: Each student will fully understand the importance of improving and maintaining muscular strength as it relates to physical fitness and health.
• Cardiovascular conditioning may be either “steady state,” or “interval training” as practiced on one of the stationary machines in the Fitness Center. All students will have some choice of modality, subject to staff approval.
• Flexibility is overlooked in many fitness programs. Each student will be exposed to various stretching methods, ranging from static isolated stretching for specific muscle groups to dynamic or movement drills designed to enhance body awareness and coordination.
• Nutrition: Although we are not nutritionists or dietitians, encouraging students to lead a healthy lifestyle and choose foods wisely is a main concern.
Pingry’s Physical Fitness Requirement
All students in Form III (Grade 9) will be enrolled in Introduction to Physical Fitness. All students in Form IV (Grade 10) must be on a Pingry athletic team or enrolled in a Fitness class, Health, Dance, or Drivers Education during all three trimesters.
Students in Forms IV-VI the have the opportunity to fulfill their physical fitness requirement by performing a variety of activities of their choosing.
These activities must meet the following guidelines, which are in accordance with the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) recommendations for active individuals.
1. A minimum of 180 minutes (3 hours) of moderate to intense physical activity per calendar week.
2. Physical activity should be performed a minimum of 3 workouts or sessions per calendar week on separate days.
3. Exercise choices should include strength training, cardiovascular activities, and flexibility training.
4. All exercise sessions must be documented and submitted to the Fitness Department Director for review.
Approved Activities: The following courses and activities meet the Fitness Education requirement, and are pre-approved and require no documentation:
1. Fitness Education Class (#EDFIT)
2. A.M. / P.M Fitness class (Forms V-VI Only)
3. Movement For Actors (Trimester I only)
4. Pingry Musical (Trimester II only)
5. Pingry Dance Class
6. Hip Hop Dance (on campus)
7. Pingry Yoga Offerings
8. Participation on a Pingry Athletic Team
9. Off Season (on campus) Pingry team workouts
Other Activities: Students may apply for an exemption from an on-campus activity. The following activities may meet Pingry’s Physical Fitness Requirement.
1. Organized club sports team (out of play season), or activity (with a coach or instructor)
2. Off campus dance academies (with instructor)
3. Organized fitness programs with a professional trainer. * No gym memberships.
Students’ exemptions will be audited several times a trimester to insure compliance with the requirements outlined above. All students should keep accurate records of each exercise session. Students must submit the necessary documentation at the end of each trimester to the Fitness Department Director for review.