Running from stress


Alyssa Alvarez, Sports Editor

From the time my dad put a basketball in my hands at the age of 3, I knew I had found my thing. I loved the sport.

At that young age, however, I was playing to impress my brother and my friends at school.

I have grown to look at basketball as an escape. When the pressures of school, friendships and parents begin to bear down on me, the pounding of the ball on the floor and the sound of it swishing through the net is one of the few constants in my life.

Physical activity can act as an outlet to tune out problems of the real world. Taking an hour or two a day to just focus on what one loves to do can release everyday stress.

Teenagers need to find that one activity or place that takes their mind off of everything. Participating in sports, aerobics or yoga not only provides the opportunity to exercise, and lets participants go to a place that relieves the stresses of day-to-day life.

Children, who heartily exercise for no less than 20 minutes three or more days a week, exhibited higher grades in a study by the American College of Sports Medicine. Those involved in less strenuous activities for 30 minutes over five days per week did not achieve the same improved grade results.

Sitting in a classroom for seven hours every day, five days a week can become too much of a routine for some teens. Activities break up the blandness of doing the same thing every day. We all need the chance to look forward to a Tuesday dance class or Friday gym workout.

At the same time, competitive activities and sports can cause even more anxiety and stress. The enjoyment of an adolescent’s’ passion can be taken away by the pressure placed them by others and themselves, so competitive may not always be the best outlet for everyone.

It is important we all to find something we love to do, but also have fun. Basketball gives me a getaway when everything else is not working out.