Mountain Biking Added to Wausau High School Phy. Ed. Curriculum

By: Liz Hayes Email
By: Liz Hayes Email

The Wausau School District is amping up its physical education curriculum, which includes a large purchase of mountain bikes and other new equipment for schools.

The owner of Sprocketz Bike Shop in Weston scored the big order.

"It's 70 bikes, 80 helmets, some repair stands, some tools, tubes things like that," said John Nowaczyk.

His proposal won a bid for the bikes, and service, that will be added to the high school phy. ed. curriculum. But Nowaczyk says it isn't about making money for the shop, but encouraging kids to take up the sport he loves for life.

"When kids get a chance to ride and they get the chance to ride good quality bikes and they shift correctly and they fit right it's less intimidating, it's more fun," he said.

The bike purchase is a small part of a large, federal PEP grant. PEP stands for physical education programs. The district was awarded $1.6 million to spend over three years to enhance physical education.

The bikes, helmets and accessories will cost about $24,000.

Once the mountain biking units are implemented students will stay on campus. Both schools have room outdoors for the students to practice their biking skills.

Along with bikes, students are taking advantage of a new Wausau West weight room, and will get a high ropes course at Wausau East.

Darci Mick Beaversdorf, the PEP grant project coordinator for the district, says the second year of the grant will emphasize outdoor activities.

"Looking at lifetime activities, really adding in the lifetime activities so every child has an opportunity to experience those and then hopefully be able to do those activities throughout their life," Mick Beaversdorf said.

The PEP grant has also allowed for the purchase of pedometers and heart rate monitors for students to use. Mick Beaversdorf says as conditions of receiving the grant, the district must keep track of student progress.

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