Girls forced to do bear crawls on hot asphalt as punishment in gym class

WALLER, Texas -- Bear crawls are a tough exercise for most of us. But now imagine doing them outside on hot asphalt.

Last Thursday, it was 87 degrees in Waller, and the temperature on the ground may have been above 115.

"I just feel like they didn't do her right," said Tammy Martinson.

Martinson called Eyewitness News after her 13-year-old daughter Chelsea came home from school with burns on her hands.

"The doctor suggested automatically that we should get a lawyer," Martinson explained.

Chelsea is a 7th grader at Wayne C. Schultz Junior High.

She said she and other girls in her Athletics class didn't bring clothes to change into last Thursday. As punishment, their coach made them do bear crawls around the track.
"I'm not against the punishment at all," said Martinson. "You don't do what you are supposed to, you get consequences. But not to the point to where it's physical and it's hurting them."

Waller ISD's superintendent said the coach has been disciplined and bear crawls are now banned from the district.

The district's full statement:

Last week, a coach asked several students to do bear crawls for failing to have their proper athletic attire for athletics. A student alerted the coach that the track was causing pain to the hand
of another student. The students were immediately directed by the coach to stop doing the bear crawls. The student was escorted immediately to the nurse's office. The decision by the coach
has been addressed by school district officials, and the district regrets this incident occurred. The safety of our students is always our highest priority.

Danny Twardowski
Waller ISD Superintendent
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