Connect with us

sierra78 1

In most modern high schools, P.E. is a complete blow-off class — something to take when you don’t play a sport, and have to fulfill a health/fitness-related elective. Participants often sit on the bleachers and talk, or half-heartedly play some basketball. 

There was a time in this country when P.E. was taken more seriously, however, and it reached its absolute apex at La Sierra High School in Carmichael, California.

During the 1950s and 60s, La Sierra boasted what was arguably the most rigorous P.E. program in the country, if not the world. The so-called “La Sierra System” was born in a time when World War II was over, the Cold War was still heating up, and prosperity and technological advancements were making life increasingly sedentary and comfortable. In this atmosphere, there existed a national concern over whether Americans were becoming too soft, overweight, and complacent to not only defend their country in war, but to vigorously meet the challenges of peace.

As President John F. Kennedy wrote in “The Soft American”:

physical fitness is not only one of the most important keys to a healthy body; it is the basis of dynamic and creative intellectual activity. . . . [We] know what the Greeks knew: that intelligence and skill can only function at the peak of their capacity when the body is healthy and strong; that hardy spirits and tough minds usually inhabit sound bodies.

In this sense, physical fitness is the basis of all the activities of our society. And if our bodies grow soft and inactive, if we fail to encourage physical development and prowess, we will undermine our capacity for thought, for work and for the use of those skills vital to an expanding and complex America.

Thus the physical fitness of our citizens is a vital prerequisite to America’s realization of its full potential as a nation, and to the opportunity of each individual citizen to make full and fruitful use of his capacities.

To stem the physical deterioration of his fellow Americans and promote the idea of developing a sound mind, in a sound body,JFK utilized the President’s Council on Physical Fitness to reinvigorate physical education programs around the country, and looked to La Sierra as an example of what was possible in this line.

The first few minutes of the above video will give you a look at what some aspects of the La Sierra program were like.

The La Sierra System had been developed by WWII-veteran Stan LeProtti, who was inspired by the classical, “whole man” approach to fitness that had been championed by the ancient Greeks. LeProtti’s program sought to improve the strength, agility, balance, flexibility, power, and endurance — as well as the leadership qualities — of all the males in the student body, not just those relatively few boys who participated in organized athletics. The program not only incorporated physical exercise — a regimen that included an intense 12-minute calisthenic warm-up, sports, games, dance, combatives, gymnastics, running, aquatics, and off-the-ground work on various apparatuses like peg boards — but also involved regular meetings to talk about the philosophy — the why — behind it. Students were taught that the fitness routines in which they engaged not only built their bodies, but prepared their minds for learning and their spirits for tackling life’s setbacks. 

The “Philosophy” section of the La Sierra P.E. handbook includes both “Physical Fitness” and “Psychological Fitness” as two of the program’s goals, and lists the following among the aims of the latter:

Pupils are systematically and deliberately required to ‘go all out’ within their individual capacities in a number of physical development activities, thereby progressively raising endurance and tolerance of pain levels.Pupils develop a well-disciplined attitude toward the ‘hard work principle’ in terms of heavy, energy-output type activities.

When the producers of The Motivation Factor, a documentary about the La Sierra System, interviewed those who had gone through it in their youth, they reported that the program had delivered on just this desired effect — and that it stayed with them into adulthood; when these La Sierra grads had experienced challenges in later years, they returned to their P.E. experiences as a touchstone — a reminder that they were capable of doing hard things.

Another unique trademark of the La

Continue Reading
Click to comment

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply

Trending Stories

Podcast #971: The 5 Factors for Crafting Simple (Read: Effective!) Messages

spotify

You want to convince your children, students and customers, whether you are a parent, teacher or business owner. In the modern world, where people are exposed to 13 hours of media per day, this is a difficult task. How can you make yourself heard in the midst of all this noise? My guest would tell me that it’s about keeping things simple.

Ben Guttmann, a marketing consultant and educator, has helped promote everything from NFL teams to New York Times bestselling authors. He is the author of Simply Put, Why Clear Messages Work–and how to Design Them. Today on the show, Ben explains the gap between how people like to receive messages and the self-sabotaging, complication-introducing ways people tend to send them. We discuss the five elements of effective marketing, which anyone can use to craft simple, powerful, and influential messages. We talk about why it’s better to focus on the benefits of something rather than the features. We also discuss how to use “and” instead of “so” in order to craft more focused messages.

Podcast Resources

Sunday Firesides: Do not confuse niceness with kindnessThing Explainer by Randall Munroe: Complicated Things in Simple Words

Ben Guttmann is on Facebook

Ben’s websiteBen at LinkedIn

Listen to the Podcast. Don’t forget to give us a review!


Spotify.

Apple Podcast.


Overcast.

Listen to the episode in a separate window.

This episode is available for download.

Subscribe to the podcast using the media player you prefer.

The Transcript is Coming Soon

Podcast #971: 5 Factors to Crafting Simple (read: Effective!) Messages The post Messages first appeared on The Art of Manliness.

Did you miss our previous article…
https://mansbrand.com/angel-jackets-review-black-cafe-racer-leather-biker-jacket/

Continue Reading

Trending Stories

Angel Jackets Review – Black Cafe Racer Leather Biker Jacket

Angel Jackets Review: Black Cafe Racer Leather Biker Jacket

Online shopping can be a bit like sailing through a turbulent sea. But every now and then, you come across a treasure trove that makes it all worthwhile. Angel Jackets is a paradise for jacket lovers like me.

I already own four leather jackets for men. What was my prize? My prize catch? The black café racer leather motorcycle jacket. This piece promised to not only add an extra layer to my wardrobe, but also to bring a new level of sophistication to my everyday attire. This is my Angel Jackets Review.

Easy Ordering Process

Angel Jackets’ seamless online experience set the tone from the start. The website guided me through the plethora options, but it was a black cafe racer leather motorcycle jacket that caught my attention, promising style and versatility. The ordering process went smoothly, with clear instructions and a checkout that was smoother than leather I was about touch. The PS169 price, including free shipping, was a great deal for the quality of what I received.

Unboxing

The four-day wait was well worth it. The package was not a simple box but a chest full of luxury that awaited to be opened. It beckoned, “Experience Luxury.” The message “Elevate Your Wardrobe with Our Premium Leather Jacket” was also inside. It set the scene for what seemed like a historic occasion. It was neatly folded, and a work of art, ready to be worn.

Black Cafe Racer Leather Biker Coat

The fit of the jacket was almost magical. It felt as if the jacket had been custom-made for me. The comfort of the 100% lambskin leather wrapped me in a whispering promise that it would age gracefully over time. The soft polyester lining of the jacket was like a loving embrace between it and its owner.

The nuances are what really set this jacket apart – the decorative padding on shoulders, which whispered stories of adventure; the four zipper pockets; and the zipper sleeve sleeves that speak the language of function with flair. The erect neckline with its smooth YKK zipper closure added a touch of sophistication.

This jacket wasn’t just a piece; it was an expression. The black color was like a blank canvas, allowing for endless combinations. The decorative seam details and the extra pockets, one of which is specifically for a smartphone

Did you miss our previous article…
https://mansbrand.com/skill-of-the-week-throw-a-boomerang/

Continue Reading

Trending Stories

Skill of the Week: Throw a Boomerang

A man’s ability to adapt to any situation is an important part of his masculinity. We’re republishing an illustrated guide from our archive every Sunday so that you can improve your manly knowledge week by week.

The process usually goes like this: You buy a boomerang in a toy shop because it sounds interesting. You can throw it in an open field. Throw it half a dozen times, only to hear it crash to the ground about 20 feet from where you are standing. Place the boomerang at the back of the closet and forget about it.

It’s easy to understand why boomerangs frustrate. It’s not intuitive like throwing a football or baseball. The key to a successful throw is the correct grip, throwing motion and evaluation of your circumstances. Make sure you are using a “returning” boomerang. Many of them are only for decoration and fly around as well as snow globes.

Ted Slampyak, Illustration

The Art of Manliness first published the Skill of the week: Throwing a Boomerang.

Continue Reading

Trending