COVID-19 Versus Sports


Hannah Brewer

The girls varsity volleyball team at this point during the game are permitted to take their masks off to play, but the coaches are still practicing proper social distancing by staying six feet apart and wearing their masks.

Sports are a huge part of many students’ lives today. It is a way for them to escape the real world and school. They are certainly a part of mine whether it being swimming or playing softball, to just being able to watch my friends and family play the sports we love. Covid-19 is still changing the lives of student-athletes today. 

When we were first told that we would be leaving school and coming back in 2 weeks, we never thought that it would be the end of our school year indefinitely. This also meant the cancellation of sports. It was just the beginning of the season for spring sports, but they never had the chance to play. It was my junior year to play softball this season. Junior year is the time for recruitment. I did not plan on playing softball at the collegiate level, but many of my teammates did. Due to the pandemic, they did not have the time to show college coaches their true abilities and work ethic. The team had so much potential with the incoming freshman and I was very excited to see how far we could go into the WPIAL.  Many other spring sports were also canceled including, baseball, track and field, and boys and girls lacrosse. I could say that they felt the same way as not only me but all student-athletes across the country. COVID-19 has truly changed the lives of many. 

As the months went on, we were told that things would soon get better and change was coming. It never did. Teams were not allowed to assemble due to the quarantine. This took a toll on the overall performance of the athlete. Most students who played sports relied on the school facilities to practice. During this time, the strength and conditioning of the athletes drastically dropped. By the time athletes were able to go back to their sport, it will take a while to work their way back up to the potential they had before Covid-19

Mental health also plays a huge role in student-athletes. Not only do we have to keep our minds focused on the game, but we are also students first. By going online, we were unable to get the one on one learning and help we were used to. Staring at a computer screen all day and having my assignments all online, didn’t make me want to learn. The teacher-student bond is always a great aspect for student-athletes. It is really important to have good communication with your teacher whether it be missing school and making up your work, or getting extra help because you weren’t in class that day. By not having this, the mental health of not only athletes but all students were affected. 

Covid-19 has truly changed the lives of many. Whether it be an athlete or any student in general, this virus has affected them in some way, shape, or form. The quality, mental health, and overall performance of the athletes were all changed by this virus. “Will we go back to the way things were?” is something we all are asking every day.  Although last year sports were unable to play, this season is certainly different. Fall sports were able to play but in a totally different way. For instance, football is a topic many people are talking about. Like many sports, the team had to practice in different groups and ununified. By having to follow Governor Wolf´s spectator and social distancing rules, the practices and games have changed. However, this has not stopped the team bonding and unity of our fall sports this season.