A large number of high school students in Florida are taking virtual Phys Ed classes, instead of actual classes that meet for workouts or athletic games.

Virtual Phys Ed ClassesMost high school students in Miami-Dade county take online phys ed courses, which rely on an honor system. The idea is that they can free up their schedules for more academic classes, including AP classes.

Educators are concerned about the effect of this choice on students health and on their brains as well.

“When you engage in physical activity, the increased blood flow to the brain improves your ability to adapt to stressful situations,” said Scott Brown, a psychologist and assistant professor in University of Miami’s public health department.

According to Brown, exercise has many benefits, including increased levels of naturally occurring opiods, and reduction of muscle tension.  The result is that neurons fire faster in the brain, improving learning, mood, and the brain’s ability to deal with stress.

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