Different perspective on ‘extended’ spring break

Taryn Robinson, Staff Writer

When I first heard of this virus weeks ago, I was babysitting two grade schoolers. They asked me, “Have you heard about the coronavirus?” and I was confused because I was sure it was a name of a beer and they were just being funny. Turns out, yes, it is a brand of beer, but that  wasn’t even close to what this virus was.

As most of you know, coronavirus caused the start of COVID-19 in China in late 2019, and the disease is now threatening the lives of many around the globe.

Many were anticipating that in a matter of weeks, the virus would be in the U.S. While we all hate to admit it, it came to be true. We’re all experiencing a minimum two-week social distancing practice because of it.

This not only caused the USD 383 Board of Education to ultimately decide to cancel school completely through the rest of the year, but also all school-related activities such as sports and extracurricular events. 

The cancellation of school and sports aren’t even the biggest problems Manhattan and many more communities are facing. Manhattan businesses and restaurants are facing the threat of having to close because no one is out to help support their business. 

As I heard all of this in a matter of days through local news and reports, the thing that stuck in my mind the most was: no sports and stay a minimum of six feet apart from others.

I know now, that it was a very selfish reaction to get a panic attack about no swim, since the threat out there was life- and job-threatening. I was very concerned not only for how out of shape I might be by the time this blows over, if spring sports would ever start back up again; but for the team, as we only had one week to get into the swing of things.

Sure enough, someone on the girls’ swim group chat sent a message asking one of our coaches if they thought the season would ever start back up again, and what we should do. I could feel all the swimmers watching as the coach would type her response, but the answer to the question came hours later, “I really hope it doesn’t.” 

While what most everyone has been hoping, that wasn’t the response I wanted to get out of the question. While I knew group practice wasn’t possible, I still wanted to do something to keep ahead of the game. Even though getting better at swimming mostly requires swimming at the pool, that wasn’t an option. I knew I could do cardio and keep a healthy diet to help keep me in shape so I wouldn’t be totally behind if or when I came back to swim.

Since the news came about no school, I have made it my top priority to keep active and do as much as I can outside, even though these two weeks haven’t exactly been rainbows and sunshine. When I saw a graphic about the do’s and don’ts for these next two weeks, I was very happy to see tennis on the safe side.

This isolation has made me realize that you don’t need a sport to whip you into shape, that’s all on you to decide if you want to put in the work or not. While having a team to build you up and get through the hard times with you is ideal, all you need to push yourself to the limit is motivation and effort.