Unusual UNA classes expand opportunities

by Student Writer Bianca Hernandez

Classes offered by UNA’s Health, Physical Education and Recreation department offer students course credit for physical activities on campus and abroad. Check out some students’ favorite courses below:

Scuba Diving (HPE 148)

“Scuba allows you to become a fish,” said scuba diving class instructor Chad Dyer. “You can use it to explore a new world undersea and stay underwater much longer than you can just snorkeling or holding your breath.”

The class is a mix of classroom work and hands-on experience in the pool at Flowers Hall.

The pool sessions allow you to wear the equipment and put to use the techniques and procedures necessary to dive safely.

“The best part of class is watching students experience breathing under water for the first time,” Dyer said.

Senior Kate Partain said the class is not hard.

“I’ve always said there are two types of people: one can fall off the boat, take their first few breaths and know that they are born for this, and the second will fall off the boat just once before deciding never to try again,” she said.

Snowboarding (HPE 151)

Senior Christian Walker, who took the snowboarding class, said they went to North Carolina where they were taught how go to up the mountain, how to snowboard properly and how to wear the equipment.

“This class is fun because you get to meet new people and share an experience with people of different backgrounds,” Walker said.

Leslie Clegg said taking this class left a lasting experience.

“A lot of people think they will not like it because of the cold weather,” she said. “When you are going down the mountain, there is nothing more fun and free-feeling.”

Beginning Self-Defense and Karate (HPE 119)

Beginning self-defense/karate class covers the history of this practice and how it evolved the culture of martial arts. The different techniques are also discussed in this class. Two styles that Professor Tod Oyen teaches are Tang Soo Do and self-defense.

“Karate class was a way for me to get exercise that was fun and interesting,” said sophomore Lilly Wallace. “It really boosted my self-confidence.”

Wallace said one of her favorite activities was staff fighting. It requires a Bo staff which, according to Collins Dictionary, is a Japanese martial art weapon used to strike and block opponents and their weapons.

“You will not be a black belt by the end of the class by any means, but you will have a foundation of a traditional martial art,” Oyen said.

Volleyball (HPE 123)

Students will learn the fundamental skills, rules and strategies of volleyball.

Senior Desiree Alexander said she enjoyed the class and recommends it to everyone. Her favorite part about volleyball was meeting new people.

“It was a good source of exercise in my busy schedule,” she said. “The class counts as one credit hour and it is easy fun.”

Junior Jamese Patrick said she loves playing volleyball because it helps her stay fit.

“I like the class because I played volleyball in high school and I got a chance to continue practicing.”

Walking/Jogging/Running (HPE 105)

This class is offered in the fall, spring and summer terms.

Students learn stretches and practice all three types of movement. The class is designed to improve the cardiovascular system. McBrayer, Martin, Allen and Smith teach the class at different times.

Alumni Alexey Kavalenka said the class helped him physically.

“This class helped me get an extra workout in,” he said. “I recommend it to anyone who is starting out in exercising or just wants an extra workout.”