Monday, September 26, 2011

Man Without Legs Hopes To Inspire Students As A Physical Education Teacher

Before beginning to read another chapter of our textbook, I decided to search online for interesting physical education articles. Ones that were interesting enough to talk about and grasp peoples attention. While I was scrolling through google, I came across an article, 'Man Without Legs Hopes to Inspire Students as Physical Education Teacher.' This caught my attention because I also am considering working with disabled students when I graduate from college. The man on the right, is a 24 year old college student, studying to become a physical education teacher to students with special needs. His name is Doug Forbis, and has a goal to help students just like him to be successful at whatever they want.
At two years old Doug had his legs removed due to a disease called Sacral Agenesis. After reading the article, it made me think about all the discussions I've had in my adapted physical education class, and here is Doug answering most of them. According to Doug, he doesn't know any other lifestyle than having no legs. He's used to walking on his hands or in a wheelchair, he's used to doing thing differently than others because of his disability, but that makes him unique, and one of a kind. Doug currently drives a minivan, with hand controls. A topic in class that came up was should disabled people be able to drive, and the answer is why not? Just because they have an issue in there life does not mean they are any different from you or I.
In 2008, Doug tried out for the U.S. paralympic team, where he felt more comfortable being around people with similar problems. As for the mental aspect of Doug's life, he says he has no physical problems, but does get frustrated when people look at him funny in the mall, or wonder why hes hanging around certain people. A lot of people have close minded opinions, and don't want to learn about anything but themselves. Being optimistic and willing to learn, will make you an overall better person. On the left is Doug playing Frisbee with another person, but I thought it was interesting to see how he was throwing the Frisbee from a physical education perspective. He is balancing on one hand, which is very difficult and requires strength. I assume he will then somehow twist his body to gain enough whip on his throw. Regardless, it is very impressive to see someone with no legs, balance on one hand and throw a Frisbee.
Is it beneficial to have a disabled physical education teacher, teaching students with special needs? Of course everyone is going to have different opinions, but I'm going to tell you mine. I believe it is definitely beneficial for a few reasons. For one, the students will be much more comfortable seeing someone else with a similar problem, trying to complete the same tasks they are. Second, the teacher will be able to recognize what the student is doing wrong and be able to give them feedback quicker. Third, while giving demonstrations, they will be more realistic, than if these students had a stud athlete doing it to perfection every time; it could discourage the students. Being around students and peers with similar abilities makes it more fun for everyone because nobody is left out, and everyone has equal chances to participate to there full ability. Below is the link for the article, I encourage everyone to read it, it's a great story.

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