An athlete's perspective: Spring break
Published: Tuesday, February 26, 2013
Updated: Tuesday, February 26, 2013 15:02
With half the semester complete and the Wilmington weather still in limbo, UNC Wilmington students welcome the middle of March every year as an opportunity to celebrate the warm sun and, well—just about anything else.
Be it Key West or Daytona Beach, Cancun or the Bahamas, UNCW’s masses join the flock of college students that flee for paradise and a week like no other. But every spring there are those of us that are left behind, enjoying spring break nonetheless, but with a much different mindset.
Since the creation of MTV’s seasonal show “Spring Break” chronicling the college students that go wild during the week of freedom, many have felt the need—even the obligation—to spend at least one spring vacation on the edge. It seems that as students grow older and begin to see their window of college coming to a close, the need for that adventure becomes dire.
But what if you didn’t have a choice? What if your spring break was forgone conclusion, an inevitable decision?
For the seven spring sports that are just beginning and the handful of winter sports teams concluding their seasons, spring break takes on a much different look. Student-athletes are afforded the rare ability to push aside their schoolwork in favor of competition and preparation. Much like the professionals that so many admire, student-athletes are given a week to take a step back from the stresses of homework and tests in exchange for an added appreciation and dedication to the sports that we play.
Athletes relish the chance to put their sport on the front burner. To put your completion above anything else, without another care in the world, is something that so few get to enjoy. Yet, every year people leave campus with a sympathetic wave to the athletes that had to stay home. It’s hard to understand why anyone could pass up on white beaches and the resort life, but for student-athletes, the reasons are abundant.
Whether it’s the green grass at both Brooks and Boseman fields or the warm courts of UNCW tennis complex, whether it’s the greener fairways of the golf course or the faster track that’s seen a little more sun, whether it’s an outdoor swim and the subsequent tan or an early morning shoot around because what else was there to do, spring break offers us time to get back to the little things and away from the stressful things. It offers us the freedom to put in as much time as we’d like—and yeah, there are some hours passed with the aid of a few video games.
Sure we might have to endure stories of the beaches and the bars. And sure, there might be new pictures and new sunburns that we wish we were a part of, but at the end of the day, when all is said and done, the only thing anybody will remember is the championship ring that sits on your hand.