Some of my best and worst memories trace back to my gym classes in the '90s. Every year, the mile run test was a nightmare for me. I was not in great shape, I had asthma, my Limited Too shorts had a hole in the butt, and I could barely make it around the track once before my more fit friends had finished — whereas they could run a mile in seven minutes or less, it took me closer to 20 minutes. I was so slow that they had to change the rules for me — I was allowed to walk the last two laps and if I didn't finish in under twenty minutes, I was allowed to stop, since the coach had other classes to teach and couldn't wait for me to huff and puff my way around the track any longer.
Gym was not always my friend growing up, especially during physical fitness tests. But throughout the rest of the year, gym and I were pretty cool with each other. I was into team sports, I loved to take a break from class to get sweaty and run around screaming, and there was always the opportunity to get a minor injury which would mean I could go to the nurse's office to drink apple juice and crunch on the ice cubes from the ice packs they gave out. These are 11 other things I genuinely miss from gym class in the '90s:
I loved to make different combinations for my gym clothes. GAP sweatpants with an LTD2 tank. A pair of A&F shorts with a baseball t-shirt. Gym fashion was like a second chance at having a great outfit each day.
Once a year, you'd show up to gym class and there'd be a parachute spread across the floor. Everyone would take their shoes off and pull it up over their heads and shake it out. It was like an acid trip in the middle of a school day.
The perfect time to work out some of your aggression and pre-teen angst. There's nothing like chucking bouncy balls at your friends for an hour. It was therapy and we didn't even know it.
For a whole week in the winter, our gym teachers would pull out spring boards, parallel bars, a vault, the squishy blue mats for cartwheels, and the triangle matt for somersaults. It was like the mini Olympics and endless fun.
Pre-Katniss bliss! We had so much fun knowing that what we were doing what ~dangerous~. It certainly pulled us out of the monotony of every day school life.
Playing kickball outside on the cracked pavement was a great way to scuff your knee or skin your palm. I usually ended up in the nurse's office, which was fine by me.
This was the most low-key sport we played in gym. The ball was big and came at you basically in slow motion. If you hit it, it never went far, and if you struck out, you got to go sit on the bleachers and zone out. It was a serious win-win.
I'm still not really sure why we had scooter days in gym or what the point of it was, but I'll never forget sitting on that little rolling square and scooting all over the linoleum floors. It was like skateboarding for your butt and with no risk of injury.
The best gym days were the ones you got to spend sitting on the bleachers talking to people you wouldn't usually find yourself talking to. It was a great way to make new friends and learn about other group's gossip.
When these jersey-like tops were passed out at the beginning of the class, we knew we were going to be split into teams and playing against each other. They gave your gym outfit a super Sporty Spice upgrade.
It was so much fun to be divided and play against your friends. You'd find yourself forming alliances with people you barely know and flexing your competitive muscles. Also knowing that the final score wouldn't really count for anything made it much more fun.
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