Athlete awareness

Kortnie Hammac, staff writer

Athletic awareness is a monthly meeting in the west auditorium for all the freshman and sophomores in season. The meetings are supposed to improve the knowledge of student athletes pertaining to drugs, their bodies, and safety. Also, the importance of teamwork is discussed. But does this actually influence a student or is it a waste of practice time?

Missing practice is the only thing some students get out of athlete awareness, but there’s more to that than a free day. During the meetings, depending on what they discuss, you learn about how to keep yourself out of danger. Drugs are one of the key topics because they can affect your athletic career seriously and ruin past accomplishments. Discussing drugs and using extreme examples can help an individual visualize what could happen to them. They talk about athletic safety and how should take care of your body on and off the court/field, as well as how to play safe. “During track season we had a meeting and we went off body safety and I realized I was doing something wrong that could have completely jeopardized my track season,” stated Justin Alberico. Hurting yourself as an athlete could ruin career and everything you tried to achieve. Each meeting is only benefiting you if you pay attention and retain useful knowledge from them.

No one seems to care though. Athletes from all sports come to these meetings to sit there and not pay attention. To most athletes, meeting days are just no practice days. “I care about myself but I know what to do as an athlete and what not to do so the meetings don’t really have an impact on me,” stated Alexis Zaide,”Most kids just there on their phones not paying attention”. The majority of kids won’t take West’s suggestions for a better athletic career because a meeting will not influence their decision. Does anyone actually think back to a meeting during a bad decision?

Athlete awareness is an excellent thing at school; the only problem is Joliet West athletes sit on their phone during an important presentation on the consequences of heroin. Even though there are athletes that take thought and consideration into their well-being, the thing that matters is that it affects you at home, practice, games and life in general.