The Sports Archives – How I Signed my Kids up for Rock Climbing

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As a sports family we’ve tried it all. My oldest went through the gauntlet of backyard baseball, intramural soccer, and finally tennis in middle school. He doesn’t do anymore sports, but he does play with a golf simulator on his computer, so I know that the lessons have stuck with him.

In spite of past experience, however, we were lost when it came to finding a sport that our two youngest, 9 and 11, could do together. These two are attached at the hip, but they can’t play on the same team in a lot of sports because of the age difference and gender separation in sports.

I was about to throw in the towel when I was hit by inspiration. I was at the farmer’s market a few months ago and I saw an unfamiliar booth. For some context, it’s not uncommon for local businesses to come down to the market just to hand out their cards, whether or not they’ve got much of anything to do with farming or homemade crafts.

This week it was a group from the local climbing gym who had come out. They were handing out flyers and had some of the tools they use for demonstration. One thing in particular that caught my eye was their kid’s program. I asked the woman behind the table about it. She was very friendly and told me about how they offer after school kid’s programs. They break up the age groups into 6-8 and 9-12, so I knew that I’d hit the jackpot. There’s also no gender separation in rock climbing, so my two youngest could do it together with no trouble.

After doing some research to make sure that it was totally safe (I’m a mom, it’s what I do), I quickly signed my kids up. Here’s a report on how things have been going so far.

The kids were super excited when I first brought up the idea. My husband also pointed out that climbing had just been accepted into the 2020 Olympics, so it was definitely as real a sport as anything else we’ve done in the family. The first few weeks I stayed close just to see how they were going to treat the kids, how much fun everyone was having, and just generally to make sure I’d made a good decision. For those of your wondering where my husband is in this, he usually sticks to his own dad adventures and leaves the day-to-day with the kids to me.

The first session filled me with glee and worried me a little at the same time. They spent a lot of time talking about safety, how to use the ropes, what to do when you fall, how to stretch properly, and all this stuff that sports moms geek out about. The kids, though, looked a little bored as time went on. Every child got a chance to go up and have the instructors show them one-on-one how to clip the rope into their harnesses with their carabiner. I thought this was super important since the ropes catches you if you fall, but it took so long for each kid to go up, have the instructor show them what to do, then do it the right way on their own. I was worried my kids were going to nod off before it was their turn.

Fortunately, however, things picked up pretty quickly after that. As soon as they started climbing on the huge wooden walls with plastic holds the kids were unstoppable. I’m not ashamed to say that my girl and boy were a little scared of going too high at first, but once they got the hang of it they were practically flying up the wall. The instructors were very good with kids, too, and clearly had some training about how to be patient with kids who are doing something new in an unfamiliar environment.

All in all I have to say that signing my kids up for rock climbing was a resounding success. I’d recommend it to any other moms out there who are looking for some unconventional sports to get their kids into. It’s great for staying healthy and my kids tell me that it’s a ton of fun. I might even try it myself soon.

Brooke Faulkner

 

 

 

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The Sports Archives – How To Improve Your Golf Game

Improve Your Drive – the Most Basic Basics

Many golfers will tell you the drive is the most difficult part of the game to master. There are several reasons for this, and they land in both mental and physical aspects of the game. On the physical side, the main reason is that the driver is the least forgiving of the clubs. Because of the greater distance that the ball will (hopefully) travel, small mistakes are amplified. From a mental standpoint, the driver is the most intimidating and most frustrating of the clubs, and the drive is the most public of swings. For the golfer who wants to focus on his or her drive, it appears to be a tough, uphill battle. However, if you take everything one step at a time, resist frustration, and stay calm, it’s a challenge that can be overcome.

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The Mental Game

Golf is supposed to be fun, remember? Then again, isn’t it the challenge that makes it fun? Golf is an extremely mental sport. It’s important to get your head in the right place so that you don’t allow small mistakes to ruin your game or push your frustration into the red zone. Your mind will play tricks, so here are a few tricks that you can play in return.

  1. Be Patient – If you know that you can hit the ball 200 yards right down the middle of the fairway, that may be the better option than trying to belt it 300 yards every time. The long ball is going to end up in the woods much more often, and is likely to cost you strokes in the end.
  1. Play Here, Now – It’s easy to dwell on the bad shot you made on the last hole, or to think about the dreaded par 5 ahead. You’re much better off focusing on the present and concentrating on the fundamentals of this drive, right now.
  1. Control Your Emotions – Rather than dwelling on a bad drive and carrying that frustration to the fairway (or into the woods), try to let go of that frustration. A simple distraction is often effective — try talking with one of your playing partners about a non-golf topic, for example.

 

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The Physical Game

As important as the mental aspect of the game is (some say golf is 90% mental), the physical aspect is critical, as well. Of course, you’ll want to try to stay as fit as possible. Also, you’ll need to teach your body what your brain may already know — how to play golf.

  1. Stretch – As with any sport, stretching is important to prepare your muscles for the workout ahead. Stretching before each drive, or at least before your first drive, will limber up your muscles and add flexibility. It will also help you relax, which is key to a good drive.
  1. Practice, Practice, Practice – The more time you spend teaching your muscles what they’re supposed to be doing on the golf course, the better you’ll be. Get one of those putting greens for your office. Head to the driving range as much as possible. If the weather keeps you from the links, find a golf simulator nearby where you can practice your swing and even tap into the software’s analytics.
  1. Focus on the fundamentals of your swing – You’ve heard this a thousand times, and it was sound advice every time you heard it. As you step up to the tee, take a deep breath and slow down. Forget about the last hole. Forget about the dreaded par 5. Now go over the fundamentals as you set up your drive. Alignment. Grip. Posture. Stance. Ball Position. Take your time. Take your swing. THWACK!

 

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Bio

Matt is an avid golf enthusiast and part of the TruGolf.com team. When he’s not working on his fairway shot, you will find Matt writing about his passion for the process of the game.

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The Sports Archives – The Story of Arthur Ashe

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Tennis Greats: The Story of Arthur Ashe

On the 6th of February 1993, the only African-American man to ever win the Australian Open, Wimbledon and the U.S. Open died of complications as a result of AIDS. He was only 49 at the time. Some knew him for his wonderful tennis game, while others were ardent supports because of all his social activism. In either case, Arthur Ashe was a revered man who gained the respect of everyone who came across him. Even his closest rivals knew what a great athlete and man he was. And one way the tennis community paid tribute to the great man is by naming a tennis court after him. The Arthur Ashe Stadium at Flushing Meadows, New York, is the largest tennis arena in the world, holding over 23,000 people.

Trial and Adversity

Even though Ashe went on to become one of the best tennis players in the world, his life was not easy. He grew up in a segregated neighborhood in Richmond, with only his father to take care of him, as his mother had passed away due to complications from a toxemic pregnancy. Ashe was pushed hard by his father, who wanted his son to excel at both his studies and sports. However, Ashe Sr. never let his son play football, due to his thin build.

Luckily for Ashe, he found his entry into sports through tennis, as he began playing at public playgrounds from the age of seven. He was quickly spotted as a brilliant natural talent by Ron Charity, a student at the Virginia Union University. Ashe took lessons with Charity for several years, and he continued playing the game throughout his school years. Charity also connected Ashe with Robert Johnson and Althea Gibson, who had founded a tennis camp at his home in Lynchburg, Virginia. He invited Ashe there at the age of ten, and taught the young boy everything he could about tennis, sportsmanship and the mental composure he needed to make it as a black athlete during those times.

A First for Everything

Every step in his career was a first for Arthur Ashe, as he broke boundaries, proved people wrong and showcased his talent and temperament at every opportunity. After graduating high school, he went to UCLA on a full tennis scholarship and became the first African-American man to take part in the Davis Cup for the United States. He served in the Army for two years after graduating from UCLA, and then he went on to win the U.S. Open in 1968. Two years later, he was the Australian Open champion, and in 1975 he became Wimbledon champion after defeating Jimmy Connors in the final.

Graceful Giving

Off the court, Ashe dedicated his life to charity and humanitarian work, and his tennis programs were incredibly popular with inner city children in various parts of the United States. He was also outspoken about the cruelties of the apartheid government in South Africa, and he was never afraid of giving his opinion on social issues.

All Good Things Must Come to an End…

Ashe passed away in 1993 from AIDS, a disease he had contracted nearly a decade earlier due to a bad blood transfusion during a heart procedure. For many years, he had not told anyone about his condition, but he eventually made his AIDS diagnosis public after a newspaper discovered details about his health.

… But His Memory Endures

Four years after his death in 1997, the United States Tennis Association announced their decision to name their new center court at Flushing Meadows the Arthur Ashe Stadium, ensuring the man would be remembered and cherished in the sports world forever.

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The Sports Archives – What Winter Sports Will Fit Students Life?

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All work and no play indeed makes jack a dull boy. What better way for a student to unwind than to engage in safe sports? With the winter season already at our doors, staying indoors is not the best way to curb the winter fever. A number of sports have been devised to help stay in shape and also to get rid of the monster called boredom. In the modern age we are, gone are the days when we used to sit by the fireplace all day to keep warm and to pass the time.

This article will come in handy especially for you who has no definite plan on how to spend your winter.

Winter sports for students.

1. Mountaineering.

This is especially suitable for the adventurous students who love the thrilling feeling of adrenaline rushing through their veins. A special form of dress code is required for this kind of sport because ‘the higher you go the cooler it becomes’ is a true phrase. If it is your first time to take part in this sport, you are much safer with an instructor standing close by. Mountaineering is a very healthy sport that helps get your mind off things or too stressed out to even think clearly.

2. Paragliding.

Is a sport that involves being suspended in the air using rigid structures known as paragliders. A pilot has to be on board to ensure a smooth sailing flight in the sky. Calmness of the mind is totally guaranteed as you soar higher to the altitude of your choice. Though it is classified as a winter sport, your skin comes to contact with the harmless rays of the sun. The reason why it is highly recommended for students especially those in campus, is that it is an appropriate way to utilize leisure time and to stay away from trouble.

3. Snow boarding.

This is an all time favorite of almost every student. Feeling the wind hitting against your face as you glide through the snow is an unbeatable combination of thrill and adventure. This too requires special kind of footwear that are streamlined to make you move smoothly across the snow filled region and avoid tripping and falling on the snow. For those trying it out for the first time, all you have to do is watch and learn, it’s no rocket science.

4. Snow skiing.

Is almost close to snowboarding only that you don’t need to hold on to any apparatus for support. Ensure that you are warmly dressed as the cold wind is bound to hit against your face. This is a sport that does not require any special kind of training or courses either. The more times you take part in it is the more skilled you will be in it.

Sports are a very vital part of a student’s academic life and should be taken very seriously. Also it is important to make your homework in time, so if you need help in your studying, read tips to write an informative essay. They help in all aspects of growth in a student’s body, especially physically and mentally. This winter, join your family for that vacation that took the whole year to organize and it will surprise you what wonder it will do for you when you go back to school.

This article was written by StudyFaq professional writers.

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The Sports Archives – What To Do If You Suspect A Child On Your Team Is A Victim Of Abuse

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What to do if you suspect a child on your team is a victim of abuse

As a coach, you will be spending a lot of time with the kids on your team. Your team members look up to you and will listen to you in important matters even outside of sports. When spending this much time with your team members, you may discover some things that you wish you never happened. Child abuse is one of the scariest and hardest things to deal with. If you suspect one of your players is a victim of abuse, it can be very hard to know what to do. It is important to intervene and take action.

Confront the child in a loving and gentle way

For an abused child, it can be very scary to talk about the abuse they are going through. They may feel like it is impossible to get out of the situation they are in. Talk to them calmly and quietly about the suspicions you are feeling. They may not talk about it the first time you ask them, so be patient and follow-up with them about the concerns you have. Never pressure the child to tell you anything as this can make them close off even more.

Look for the signs

When you suspect that a child is being abused, there are certain signs that you must look for. Physical signs are the first that you should keep an eye out for. If you see repeated bruising that doesn’t make any sense, this is a big indicator of a troubling situation. Any burns or broken bones that make no sense can also be very scary signs of abuse. Unkempt hair, poor hygiene, and malnutrition can also be signs of neglectful behavior. The behavioral signs of abuse are very important to look out for as well. Extreme behaviors can be a sign of abuse. If a child is overly withdrawn, angry, sad, or shy, this could be the sign of repeated abuse. Problems with grades and truancy can also be a sign of abuse. If a young child is already experimenting with substances, this could be a warning sign.

The quicker you act, the better

While you may be afraid and not know what do, it is important to act quickly and seek help as soon as you can. The first 96 hours after an abusive incident are very important. Medical assessments that can be made quickly after an incident that can be very crucial in any criminal investigation. The longer you wait, the harder it will be for social workers to help remove this child out of a dangerous situation.

Make sure to reassure the child it is not their fault

Children who are enduring abusive situations constantly need reminders that this is not their fault. You must let them know that they did the right thing by telling you what is happening. Let them know that this has happened to other kids and it is not just something bad that only happened to them. This will help further their belief that it really is not their fault.

Jessica Kane is a writer for SteelLocker Sports. A leading provider of sporting goods and training programs for coaches, players, parents and institutions with a primary focus on youth sports.

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The Sports Archives – Incredible Feats: Athletes Competing in the Summer and Winter Olympic Games

With the weather changing, and the first snows falling in many parts of the country, our attentions begin to turn to winter sports, particularly with the 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang just two ski seasons away. Ski jackets are being dragged out of storage, ice skates are being dusted off, and Americans all over the country are preparing for a wonderful winter of sport. Whilst many of our Summer games champions will be enjoying a well-earned rest before they resume training for the 2020 games, a very few will begin training for their alternative chance at Olympic glory. According to renowned Olympic historian, Bill Mallon, throughout the modern history of the games a total of 128 athletes have competed in both Winter and Summer sports.

The Yongpyong Dragon Valley ski resort will be at the center of 2018 PyeongChang Winter Games.

The Yongpyong Dragon Valley ski resort will be at the center of 2018 PyeongChang Winter Games.

American Sporting Icons

This year two of those who are serving double duty in both games are American track and field athletes Lolo Jones and Lauryn Williams. Lolo Jones began her Olympic career as a 100 meter hurdler, finishing seventh in the hurdles during the Beijing 2008 games, and fourth during the London 2012 games. It was after London that Lolo made the decision to switch her sporting attention to bobsledding: we can expect to see her first Olympic race in the sport in PyeongChang during the 2018 games. Inspired by her former teammate Lolo Jones, Lauryn Williams has also joined the American Olympic bobsled team. Williams began her career as a sprinter, winning a silver medal for the women’s 100 meter sprint during the Athens 2004 games. She then took home a gold medal during the London 2012 games as part of the 4 x 100 meter relay team. Williams’ transition to the winter Olympics has happened incredibly quickly, and just six months after switching to the sport she was announced as a push athlete for the team. In 2014 Williams won a silver medal during the Socchi winter Olympics, as part of the two woman bobsleigh team, meaning that she has achieved the incredible feat of winning a silver Olympic medal in both the summer and winter games: She will be going for gold in 2018.

The Legend of Eddie Egan

Eddie Egan 1920 AntwerpThere is a precedent of American athletes who serve double duty by competing in both the summer and winter Olympic Games, and it would be impossible to talk about the phenomenon without mentioning Eddie Egan, who holds the record for being the only person to have ever won gold medals at both the Summer and Winter Olympic games. Eddie won a gold medal for light heavyweight boxing during the 1920 Olympic Games in Antwerp. He then went on to win a second gold medal during the 1932 Winter Olympic games in Lake Placid as part of the four man bobsled team, despite the fact that until he arrived in Lake Placid that year, he had never actually been inside a bobsled before. Eddie Egan is often referred to as the greatest Olympian you have never heard of. There are huge similarities between the careers of Egan and Lauryn Williams, which many commentators are hoping could inspire the talented athlete to more double Olympic success.

Our diverse natural climate lends itself perfectly to athletes attempting to compete in both games: we have regions of the country where the winters are incredibly cold with plenty of powder, and warm dry summers that are ideal for track and field training. Athletes competing for America in both the summer and the winter games are well equipped and well-trained: the American Olympic Committee employs over 350 people across the country to ensure that our nation’s athletes have everything they need to go for goal. Financial support, in conjunction with great talent, is an incredibly important aspect of Olympic success and it is no coincidence that the countries who invest the most in nurturing their teams have the most success on the medal tables. Here’s hoping we are nurturing the talent that will challenge  Edie Egan’s incredible record in the country right now.

This is an article by Helen Cairns.

Photo Credits: Wikipedia Commons

 

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The Sports Archives – How To Become A Writer Of A Sports Column

Press Room at the Philips Stadion

Press Room at the Philips Stadion

Sports writers play a crucial role when it comes to connecting fans with their favorite teams. Sports writers are expected to write an in-depth coverage on about teams and their performances. Besides journalistic writing about the game, reporters cover other aspects such as team transactions, coaching techniques and other news about the team. Sports writers have numerous opportunities including sports news websites, sports team websites, and starting their sports blog. However, to be a great writer of a sports column, one needs to have certain core competencies. The following are some ways to become an outstanding writer of a sports column.

I. Broaden your understanding of sports in general

Sports is like any other business. Sports writers need to have an in-depth understanding of sports as a business to be able to write about it thoroughly. Sports does not involve tournaments alone, there other several activities including public relations, transactions, sponsorship, and marketing among others. A great sports writer should be able to write about any given field.

II. Consider taking sports journalism as your major

Specializing in sports journalism will help you to acquire a broad knowledge base in sports. Sports journalism will allow you to watch and attend various sports activities. You can also associate yourself with a particular team and cover their events. Becoming part of the team will enable you to familiarize yourself with sports mechanics such as sports rules, strategies used to winning games, and player’s positions in the field.

III. Get a good editor of your work

You need to have an editor who will go through your story and point out some of the mistakes. Editors will improve your job, and they help in improving your writing skills as time goes. Good editors can also become your mentors.

IV. Read columns written by other writers

Read other author’s work to improve your writing. Consider reading columns written by good writers. Find jobs belonging to award-winning sports journalists and read them repetitively to be able to improve your writing skills. Reading great sports stories will encourage you to improve your writing. Besides reading columns written by other writers, you can also read sports articles, books, and opinion pieces. Extensive reading will expose you to writing skills and ingenuity that is required to succeed in this field.

V. Improve your research skills

A good sports column writer should be in a position to research well and write stories based on facts rather than gossips. Research properly on a given topic and write an authentic story. Remember to use relevant sources and official documents to support your story.

VI. Connect with your target audience

A good sports writer needs to write to a particular audience. The audience can be sports fans in general or fans of a particular sport. You need to convey a story that suits your target audience. The fans can consist of sports professionals, fans of a particular sport, or fans of general sports. The story should give readers the urge to read more of the writer’s stories. You ought to strive to develop a loyal following of readers.

VII. Consider obtaining a journalism

A journalism degree will give you a basic training needed to succeed in this field. Take journalism and communication programs that fit your field of interest. The program should provide you with courses that will earn you professional qualifications such as media law. You can also undertake a degree in other fields such as history, sociology, and psychology among others to give yourself an edge in the area of journalism.

Sports writing involves accelerated growth and development as time passes. Writers will be able to gain new skills and techniques as they keep writing. However, successful sports journalists possess core competencies that have been described above. Utilize those skills and make your writing better.

This article was prepared by Edusson writers.

Photo Credit – Wikipedia Commons

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