Running Track and Why Every Athlete Should Do It
Running track is often the dreaded sport that no one wants to participate in high school. You have heard the saying “track is your sport’s punishment.” People often miss out on track and field, and it benefits because they have been brainwashed into believing that track sucks because running is only something you do when you are in the wrong.
Then you get on the track and realize that the entire sports consist of running, jumping and throwing. The truth is that every athlete should participate in track and field even if they have another sport that they love more. The benefits of running track will stay with you for your entire life.
As a track and field Olympian, I had the honor of running track with basketball players, soccer players, football players and pretty much every other sport down the line. I learned that there is no such thing as a person who cannot find a home in track and field if they are willing to look. More coaches should encourage their athletes to be multi-sport athletes and track is a great place to start.
#1 Benefits of Running Track – One of The First Sports
The first reason the running track is fantastic is that it is one of the purest sports. It takes running, jumping and throwing and makes something spectacular out of those natural abilities that most people take for granted.
If you take running, jumping and throwing out of other sports, those sports would have nothing. The goal of basketball is to score, and shooting is the skill that does that, but the competition would be boring without running, jumping and throwing. The same goes for football. These fundamental movements are what designed the rest of the sporting universe.
The track being the first logical sport is the reason that the Olympic Games are centered around track and field. It is the event with the biggest stadium and where the opening and closing ceremonies take place.
#2 Benefits of Running Track – Numbers Do Not Lie
One of the hardest things for some people is to deal with the facts of life. It is easy to become delusional as an athlete. Your parents have told you that you are a great athlete and the only reason that you do not play is that your coach is an idiot. You can hide behind that wall of lies or a long time.
Track and field make you face the truth because the sport is based on numbers. You have either hit the times in practice, or you have not. You either jumped farther than the next person or you did not. There is no grey area when you are dealing with numbers. There is no crying that you should have more playing time.
Track and field build a life skill of facing the numbers. Maybe years later you will have a business, and you will have to face numbers that you do not like. That may be hard for you to do but you can never succeed until you can see the numbers for what they are.
#3 Benefits of Running Track – There is Something For Everyone
Track and field events consist of the following sections and events
- 4x100m Relay
- 4x400m Relay
- 100m/110m Hurdles
- 3,000m Steeplechase
- High Jump
- Long Jump
- Pole Vault
- Triple Jump
- Shot Put
- Hammer Throw
- Discus Throw
- Decathlon (men)
- Heptathlon (women)
Here is the point of the list above. There is so much opportunity within track and field to get better. If you are looking to be more explosive as a football lineman, you can throw shot put. If you want to throw farther, you have javelin. Are you trying to increase your vertical for basketball season? High Jump will be perfect for you.
A lot of athletes today want to play their sports year around but it is good to get a break to help avoid burnout. By running track, you get out of your old routine, and you give your body a chance to do things a bit differently. Not only do you develop new motor patterns but you indirectly work on the skills you need for your primary sport.
#4 Benefits of Running Track – Taking Responsibility for Your Own Performance
The key to being successful in track and field is taking care of yourself. Running track gives you the opportunity to take full responsibility for your results. The problem with team sports is that you can hide behind the work of others. Star players can make the team look good.
When running track, the only way to look good is to put in the work and go out there and make yourself look good. There are no shortcuts or easy buckets here. A lot of people don’t like running track because the thought of not having a team is terrifying. There is much more pressure to handle when you are not with others. The positive side of this is that the running track will help you to focus on executing your job in any sport so you can help your team more under pressure.
#5 Benefits of Running Track – Work On Being More Technical
The track is a slow sport in the sense that you have to come out day in and day out and do the same movements over and over again. If you want to run faster, jump better or throw further, you need to work on the technical aspects of the sport.
Being technical is not exclusive to track, but running track seems to help people focus on it more. In football, you don’t focus on throwing technique as much when you have a bunch of other things you are worried about like calling the right play, and not getting a sack. It is easier to hide behind other elements of the game.
With track, there is no hiding. Most reps in practice are done alone so that a coach can watch and critique you. You have to be able to listen, take the feedback in and then figure out how to be better on the next rep.
#6 Benefits of Running Track – Get in The Best Shape of Your Life
One of the last benefits of track is the fact that it will get you in shape. Other teams will run for punishment or do gassers to get in shape. Track athlete runs day in and out to be apart of the sport.
When other athletes come from their sports, they always are in shock at how long the warm-up is alone. That is a good thing because it is getting your body in shape in a way that it is not used to.
When Injury Strikes Running Track Use
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KHO Health was acquired by was acquire by 9INE POINT in the summer of 2019 and is now referred to as 9INE POINT Health.