Athletes and why they play

Throughout the school year, many students choose to dedicate large amounts of time and effort to sports. At the same time, it seems many athletes are quick to express how much they dislike practice and the intensity of their coaches.

 Athletes will frequently state that they play because they love the sport and have fun playing it, but often it seems that the amount of “fun” being had is directly connected to the number of games the team wins or loses. This is fair; most people can agree it is much more fun to win than to lose, but do students really play for the fun of the game, or do they play to compete? Do they practice for hours a day because they want to win or because they genuinely enjoy what they are doing?

It seems to be that a season can still be good even if the team loses more than it wins. Senior wrestler Chistopher Prograis said, “Yeah, as long as you have fun.” Senior track member Alfred Bannerman said, “The season can still be good if you lose.” Junior JaQuan Barnes, a football player, said, “I like improving. You have to separate yourself from the team.”

There is some disagreement over motivation. Bannerman stated he runs, “because I enjoy it. It’s fun smoking people and seeing their faces.” Barnes said of football, “Competing is best. It feels like you are earning something.” Prograis said he wrestles “more for fun.”

    Despite agreement that sports are rewarding enough to be worth the effort, there were also an array of complaints against them. Barnes’ biggest issue with football is constantly “taking big hits.” Prograis complained of “six-minute run matches, which is just six straight minutes of sprinting.”

Three athletes also shared a whole array of benefits to sports. Prograis said he most enjoys “going places and spending time with the team.” Bannerman says he best enjoys “winning races.” As for Barnes, “The feeling of competing is like nothing else. Not everyone feels it. Ultimately you’d have to be me to really understand how it feels.”

Header and Thumb photos from Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license.

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