Being a student athlete gives back

Mackenna Briggs, Focus Editor

As the smells from the locker room assault your senses, you groan inwardly and prepare yourself to face yet another sweat-inducing workout, undoubtedly one that will make you sore for days. You think of all the homework you have to get done after practice and another groan escapes from you as you realize you will most likely have to forsake much-needed sleep to get it all done.

You are a student-athlete.

What does this mean to you? A loss of sleep, sure; a lot of hard work and dedication and stress, of course; but is that all?

It shouldn’t be.

Being a student athlete is more than a list of negatives, and a student athlete should really remember to think of those ever-important positives that he or she always seems to take for granted.

There is the sense of team camaraderie. Being able to go out after a practice for donuts and laugh together, creating inside jokes that will make the days to come that much better. Sharing in each other’s pain as Coach pushes you harder. Having shared-goals and being there to push each other to achieve them. Simply having friends who understand and you can fall back on when things get tough.

There is the determination to do your best. The time-management abilities required to be successful in high school while dedicated to another commitment outside of it. The organization in managing many things at once: school, sport, social life, all the while taking care of yourself. The skills gained and learned in your experiences.

And then there is the technical side of it all; a student athlete is fit, is healthy physically and mentally – working out releases endorphins that alleviate stress and fends off depression. A student athlete tends to care about what he or she puts into his or her body, and as a result will have healthy eating habits, most like for the rest of his or her life.

Teamwork, perseverance, responsibility, physical endurance, commitment, time management, personal and emotional health – don’t forget about these the next time you go to practice.