The True Essence of Track and Field

Feyan Hoffman, Online Editor

Track and field season has just kicked off. Even before their first meet in March, the team has already set down goals in order to ensure their success over the next few months. But they don’t need to set goals in order to get excited to participate. There are plenty of aspects about the sport that gets the team hyped up to play.

Avi Parikh has taken part in this sport since his sophomore year. “It’s a way to make friends, it’s a good atmosphere, it makes people work hard, it gets you in shape, and it’s something fun to do,” he says. “I don’t go out and do dumb stuff because I know have track.” Parikh’s participation is also due to the fact that, because his main focus is football, he’s eager to become a faster runner through this secondary sport. This approach isn’t unique. Many students involved in track either consider it their second sport or just something to keep them in shape. Head Coach, Crystal Moeller, rejects the myth that one-sport athletes achieve the most success, saying that this is “far from the truth.” She says that some of the best athletes are dual or triple-sport athletes, and numerous scholarships are offered to students who thrive in a sport, but sit the bench in others.

Track and field is a sport with no cuts, meaning that anyone can take part in it. This, along with the secondary sport aspect and the misconception that track and field solely involves running, is why a lot of people don’t take track as seriously. However, Moeller says that people don’t see the benefits and the fun that you can really have until you participate, and emphasizes that there are a lot of activities other than running (discus throw, pole vault, etc.).

Although becoming a part of the track and field team is fairly easy, truly integrating into it requires a high level of effort and dedication. Moeller says that the best part of this sport is that everyone’s skill levels are different. Even the slowest kids can come and run, as long as they set goals to help them improve their running.

Track and Field is not always fun and games; it takes a high level of effort and dedication to improve and excel in this sport. For instance, they practice after school Monday through Friday from 3:00 to 4:30 PM, and practices can get intense. The athletes are running with people of their same speed, so it’s important to go hard every single time or else they won’t improve.

But there are aspects that make all of the hard work worth it. For Parikh, he loves the sport because of how loving the team is and how extraordinary the coaches are. Regarding Coach Moeller, he says, “we can talk to her about anything, even things not track related. She’s really understanding about everything.” He also says that meets are a lot of fun. “If I were to encourage anyone to do track, I would tell them to come to a meet to let them see how fun it is,” he says.

When it comes to what they’re anticipating this season, Moeller says, “our boys team should place really well. Our boys 4×100 is itching for the gold medal at state!” The rest of the team shares this objective. She also says that team unity is always something to work on because although individual medals can be won, track and field is ultimately a team sport.