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Is athletic pressure beneficial or harmful?

Coach+Mike+Roberts+discusses+strategy+with+the+players.

Elena Brown

Coach Mike Roberts discusses strategy with the players.

Makenzie Ellison

Pressure is commonly found in WHHS student-athletes. Their pressure can sometimes be what differentiates them from other student-athletes. Stress and pressure, though, are not always seen negatively. Some people use their stress and pressure to make them play better in their sports. The pressures can especially be found in junior high student-athletes because these students are dealing with the new WHHS environment as well as their sports and grades.

Daniea Neiheisel-Roberts, ‘27, a WHHS track runner, expresses how pressure actually benefits her gameplay. 

“I feel like when there’s lots of pressure on me, I do better and run faster,” Neiheisel-Roberts said. 

Pressure is an external feeling that is constructed by a student-athlete. It is vital also to know that there is no pressure in the sports event itself, but the pressure is created by how one perceives a particular athletic event. Some sports pressure is even forced onto student-athletes by family and other peers. 

Shaun Rice, ‘27, a WHHS basketball player, expanded on how his stress developed.

“My parents pressured me to play, so then I felt stressed to be good all the time,” Rice said. 

Student-athletes develop this stress in many ways as well. The pressure put on student-athletes is not always the best motivation for them. Some student-athletes are put into a sport reluctantly, whether to make friends or to become more athletic. It is a stressful task to play a sport while not in love with it. 

Shosh Abes-Feldman, ‘27, a WHHS basketball player, mentioned how she started playing basketball in a non-forced and healthy way for her. 

“I started because my family was really interested in Cleveland basketball, and I would watch it with them and I thought it was really cool,” Abes-Feldman said.

Each student-athlete’s stress and pressure differ from that of other student-athletes. This uniqueness can be what keeps them motivated during their sport.