The Art Of Sportsmanship

The Art Of Sportsmanship

Not the superficial kind...


Shaking the other player's hands at the end of the game, being nice to the other team, screaming three hoorays; demonstrations of sportsmanship. No. Sportsmanship goes far beyond the superficial "niceties", thereby a trait that should be instilled in both the players and spectators as a form of dignity.

What's wrong with cheering for the Clippers when they miss a jump shot? What's wrong with cheering for Djokovic when his shot bashes into the net? We all have our favorite teams, what's wrong with that? The truth is, there are many things wrong with rooting for the opponent and his failure, rather than rewarding cheers for when your team player shoots a great basket, scores a phenomenal touchdown or even an elegant crossbar goal.

However, this does not mean that you must always root for both teams, or as I do, for the underdog. Instead, sportsmanship is an important embodiment of respect to any sport and the players, coaches, and referees. The following few methods and examples as to why true sportsmanship from both spectator and athlete showcases respect and class.

1. Respect

Paramount to good sportsmanship, the concept is very easily understood, however putting this into play can be very difficult. Treat others as you want to be treated is the golden rule, and adding another dimension of treating others as they want to be treated becomes platinum. In sports, this can extend to prioritizing the team instead of yourself; giving up your shot at scoring by passing to a teammate, something along those lines. Additionally, respecting teammates by encouragement, support and picking them up when they fail will not only build their confidence, and make them feel safer, but it will also render you more respect within that team.

Respecting the game, is a whole other type of respect, and learning and understanding the rules, though overlooked, is important. As spectator, calling out fouls and being unaware of what actually happened is nothing but snobbish especially if you don't understand the game. Another form of disrespect comes in the lack of hustle, that leads to giving up especially under losing circumstances, and even in the face of pressure.

2. Class: Grace and Maturity

It is heart wrenching to play the game of your life, and put everything into something, only for it to not be enough and still have to say "good job" and shake hands with the opponent. But it proves maturity when you can keep "losing" in perspective. By this sense, the most important phrase (applicable to anything) is that if it won't matter in 5 years, don't spend more than 5 minutes stressing about it. This does not dismiss the act of carefully thinking about certain things, but in the grand scheme of your life how much will it matter if you slap their hand, instead of shaking it with grace, and somewhat appreciating their victory. Therefore, it is important to accept responsibility for a loss, and not blame it on anyone else- the referee being the most common victim.

Additionally, a similar indication of grace is acknowledging the winner- which, though difficult, shows discipline and a high degree of emotional intelligence. On the other hand, winning with humility is the outcome of being respectful in the sense that it should be fun, for exercise rather than solely about being first or pursuing an individual goal. Therefore, we should learn to win and lose whilst maintaining perspective. At the same time that you win, someone else lost and keeping how they feel in mind shows grace. Striking the balance between celebrating your achievements and dejecting your opponent is difficult.

Team can mean anything, beyond sports, and in fact a lot of the goals of coaches, soccer- moms and dads and so on revolve around developing the athletes and even spectators into productive, balanced and caring people. The sports teams and individual players can serve as analogies for other life situations such as the workplace, family and even friends. And just like sports, life is tough wherein we must learn to deal with both success and failure rather than letting either debilitate us. Thomas Edison after failing to create a successful light build 9000 times said, "Why would I feel like a failure? And why would I ever give up? I now know definitively over 9000 ways that an electric light bulb will not work." Keeping positive spirits, and persevering can inspire motivation, result in dignity, grace and respect- ultimately sportsmanship and its' importance.

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Dear Mom and Dad, You Don't Understand What College Is Actually Like In The 21st Century

I can skip class. I can leave early, and I can show up late. But, ya see, I am not doing that.

College is not what you think it is. I am not sitting in a classroom for six hours listening to a professor speak about Shakespeare and the WW2.

I am not given homework assignments every night and told to hand them in next class.

I do not know my daily grade for each of the five classes I am taking, and I don't know if my professor even knows my name.

College today is a ton different than how it was 20+ years ago.

I go to class for about maybe three hours a day. Most of my time working on "college" is spent outside of the classroom. I am the one responsible for remembering my homework and when my ten-page essay is due.

I can skip class. I can leave early, and I can show up late. But, ya see, I am not doing that. I am a responsible person, even if you do not think I am.

I do get up every morning and drive myself to class. I do care about my assignments, grades, my degree, and my career.

I spend a lot of time on campus having conversations with my friends and relaxing outside.

I am sick of older generations thinking that us millennials are lazy, unmotivated, and ungrateful. While I am sure there are some who take things for granted, most of us paying to get a degree actually do give a s**t about our work ethic.

Dear mom and dad, I do care about my future and I am more than just a millennial looking to just get by.

Cover Image Credit: Kaitlyn Moore

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How To Stay Mentally Healthy In College

Our mental health is just as important as our physical health.


Staying healthy in college seems really, really hard to do. Classes, friends, clubs, and the whole fact of living by yourself can create a lot of stress and anxiety. Most students, and people in general, don't really know how to deal with stress or how to take care of themselves mentally, leading to unhealthy behaviors physically and mentally. If you don't take care of your mental health, your physical health will suffer eventually. Here are a few tips and tricks to help take care of your mental health:

1. Eat a well-balanced diet

Eating fruits, vegetables, grains, and other healthy foods will help you feel more energized and motivated. Most people associate eating a balanced diet as beneficial for your physical health, but it is just as important for your mental health.

2. Keep a journal and write in it daily

Writing can be one of the most relaxing and stress-relieving things you can do for yourself. Writing down the issues you are struggling with or the problems you are encountering in your life on a piece of paper can help you relax and take a step back from that stress.

3. Do something that brings you joy

Take some time to do something that brings you joy and happiness! It can be really easy to forget about this when you are running around with your busy schedule but make some time to do something you enjoy. Whether it be dancing, writing, coloring, or even running, make some time for yourself.

4. Give thanks

Keeping a gratitude log — writing what brings you joy and happiness — helps to keep you positively minded, which leads to you becoming mentally healthy. Try to write down three things that brought you joy or made you smile from your day.

5. Smile and laugh

Experts say that smiling and laughing help improve your mental health. Not only is it fun to laugh, but laughing also helps you burn calories! There's a reason why smiling and laughing are often associated with happiness and joyful thoughts.

6. Exercise

Staying active and doing exercises that energize your body will help release endorphins and serotonin, which both act as a natural antidepressant. Keeping an active lifestyle will help you stay happy!

7. Talk out your problems

All of us deal with stress and have problems from time to time. The easiest and probably most beneficial way to deal with this stress and anxiety is to talk it out with a close friend, family member, or even a counselor.

8. See a counselor, peer mentor, or psychologist

Just like it was stated in the previous point, it is beneficial to talk out your problems with a counselor. We all have issues, and it is OK to ask for help.

Keeping up your mental health in college can be a struggle, and it may be hard to even admit you are not mentally healthy. This is OK; you are not alone. If you want to see a psychologist or would like to learn more about mental health, there are resources. You can also take a self-assessment of your mental health. If you are struggling with thoughts of suicide, please, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.

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