With support from The Kenneth T. and Eileen L. Norris Foundation, POLAHS installed a traverse rock climbing wall on-campus, and purchased class sets of heart rate monitors and assessment software. On a traverse wall, students climb horizontally to build technique and muscular endurance, while minimizing the risks associated with a vertical climb. Climbing develops both mental and physical strength, teaching students that success is achieved through goal-setting and perseverance in the face of obstacles. Studies show that physical fitness also translates to higher academic test scores and more positive classroom behavior.
The heart monitors allow students to reflect upon, and address, their current physical fitness levels and nutritional choices. Through team sports, individual practices, and class lessons focused on fitness, heart health, and nutrition, POLAHS students are equipped with the tools to build strong bodies and minds.