Traditionally, Japanese people ate meals of rice, grilled fish, miso soup, and pickles, which gave them a caloric deficit and created their slender frames. Nowadays, there is no shortage of Western food available in Japan to help fill them out to levels seen in the Western world. From hamburgers to sandwiches, and from bread to donuts, Japanese are experiencing an influx of calories into their diets as well as into their bodies, thus a need for exercise is becoming more and more clear.
Although fat people in Japan are only half the size of fat people in fat countries such as America and Britain, they are still an eyesore. However, unlike those countries, Japan has a large amount of shame in becoming obese, and will often hide themselves and avoid gyms, creating a need to incorporate exercise into the classroom.
Start the conversation off with simply asking “Did you lose weight?”. If the student responds “yes”, congratulate them on their hard work and encourage them to study English as well as they diet. If the student responds “No, I did not lose weight”, cast doubt on them and say that they are looking more healthy than the previous class.
Compliments are like greasing the wheels towards more activities. We’re talkin’ machine grease, not bacon grease!
Have the student stand
Tell the student that the next part of the lesson is going to involve a roleplay. Set up the roleplay as people waiting at a bus stop, or waiting in line for a new product. The background doesn’t matter as much as getting them to stand.
It’s important to push through towards completion. Overweight people like sitting almost as much as eating, and the student may make excuses in order to sit down. It’s best to just focus on the roleplay as long as possible.
Have the student do pushups
Incorporation of pushups into the lesson really begins to separate the milk from the cream, where the milk is the fat people and the cream is the better, thinner people. We’ve asked several students to do pushups with most of them flat-out refusing. Like them, we chose not to push the issue.
It’s important to remember that improving the student’s English ability is good, but improving the student is great.