Sprinting to the Finish: An Opinion on Track and Field

Sprinting+to+the+Finish%3A++An+Opinion+on+Track+and+Field

Izabella McKenna

This year. the 2022 Outdoor Track and Field season has gotten off to a great start with the girls having 40 players and the boys having around 92 players. Everyone is nervous and excited with time trials to determine who makes it on the Varsity team for sprints and hurdles. The girls and boys are determined to win the first meet of the season against RHAM on Wednesday, April 6th.

Practice is going great with the seniors teaching the underclassmen how to do everything and showing them the ropes so they know what to do next season. This year the girls and boys track team has some extremely promising freshmen, sophomores, and juniors this year. The coaches and athletes are looking forward to this season being an extremely good one, to the memories they will have when the season ends and of course, all the athletes are looking forward to receiving buddy boxes before the end of the Track and Field season. 

According to Scholastic, “Track and field is a sport that includes athletic contests based on running, jumping, and throwing skills. The name is derived from where the sport takes place, a running track and a grass field for the throwing and some of the jumping events.” Track and field is a good sport because it helps athletes like you find an outlet to express themselves. 

According to Robert Wood author of the article Track and Field events, “The events are Running, Jumping, and Throwing. Running events include Sprints, Middle distance, Long-distance, Hurdles, and Relays. Jumping events include Long Jump, High Jump, Triple Jump, Pole Vault, and Throwing events include Discus, Shot Put, Javelin.” To me, the best Track and Field event is running. I love to jump the 100-meter hurdles and sprint the 100 and 200-meter dash and the 4×100 relay. 

Bucyrus football coach Aaron Eckert says, “Overall, Track is a great sport and there are a lot of benefits from having a strong track program because it really trains kids to become faster and more explosive, and all sports benefit from that.” This is true because having multi-sport athletes on your team is really beneficial to any and all sports including football, soccer, and wrestling. 

Plymouth track coach Jay Follett says, “The change in seasons is also beneficial to athletes who play multiple sports during the school year,” he said. “A great number of my biggest contributors on the track team are athletes that play multiple sports during the school year., Athletes who play multiple sports seem to put less pressure on themselves. They can actually have fun playing or participating in a sport and not take everything so seriously.” Putting less pressure on yourself is crucial during your track season because being nervous and stressed about how you will perform, then you will end up performing badly and getting more injuries than if you were relaxed and putting less pressure on yourself. 

Some people say Track and Field isn’t a good sport or they even say it isn’t a sport at all. According to ESPN’s Max Kellerman, “Track is not a sport and you only get into it because you’re a failure of an athlete and not tough enough. Track and Field stars are usually failed Football and Basketballs stars and the best athletes go into Basketball and Football while the others fall down into Track and Field.” Kellerman got a lot of backlash from this after what he said, one person named K. Mickens commented on Twitter saying, “Tests your “fast twitches”?! Can’t think on the fly?! I guess timing when to go over a hurdle, or when to release a hammer, or when to make a move on the backstretch on your last of a 1500, or how to react off the gun off the blocks doesn’t take much thought on the fly huh?”. 

Florida State’s T&F/XC page had something to say as well. Flordia States’s T&F/XC page wrote, “Similar parallel to transitioning from failed hip-hop artist to boxing broadcaster and sports personality, Max?”. Even with a sports broadcaster dissing Track. The Track and Field community did not let any track athlete down and the community came together to defend their sport even some football players joined in saying that it doesn’t matter what background you come from the track team is always there to back up new runners and welcome some old ones. 

One football player, in particular, said, “Being on the Track team is a show of strength, courage, fearlessness, and bravery. That I didn’t have in high school until my coach told me that a lot of the Football players join the Track and Field team during their off-season to enhance speed and endurance levels.” 

According to Rob Assise, Coach of Track and Field for 17 years at Homewood-Flossmoor High School, “11 reasons athletes should play track because it helps the athlete improve the measurable that matters most Speed, improves other important measurables, such as strength, Your track coaches are the best people in the school to help you improve the most important measurable (speed), We don’t just get people faster. Everything we do is tied to enhancing overall athleticism. Higher athleticism leads to greater adaptability, you will become a better competitor, There is no substitute for competition, and every event of every meet you compete in is similar to a game-winning drive/possession, Many college coaches prefer multi-sport athletes, By playing another sport, you will have more people in your corner helping you achieve your goals, You will be coached by the same people during the time of your participation, You get to practice with freshmen through seniors. This provides numerous opportunities to learn and lead, and there is something special about wearing your school’s uniform.”

Assie is correct about his 11 reasons why track is good because track just has a way of making you a better competitor and person overall. There is 100% without a doubt something extremely spectacular about wearing your school uniform in front of a huge crowd cheering you on as you race against the clock to win that Personal Record.