Fajardo 1 Have you ever been involved with something that is not only enjoyable but also beneficial? Soccer is basically what my life’s about. I was literally raised with it throughout my whole life. My father, Eduardo Fajardo, played and was even about to go professionally. Unfortunately he had an injury during a game that caused for his knee to be replaced, but now he’s still involved with the sport. He’s coaching a team and has both my sister and brother toplay and feel passionate about the sport, but me as well. Not only is it my favorite sport, but it’sreally beneficial health wise, physically and mentally. With soccer, not only do you get to be fit, but also you’re more socially involved with others, and connected with a sport known and practiced worldwide. Soccer is one of the only sports that have a competition worldwide, also known as theWorld Cup. It is held every 4 years and it is sponsored by FIFA. They choose a country anddepending on which country it is, they’ll have it there for a period of a month. This is the mostimportant goal for a national soccer team to reach. Every national soccer team does it best,throughout a year so that they could be qualified to go fight for the cup, which is the mostimportant goal. The last world cup was held in South Africa 2010. The next one will be held inQatar on 2014, it was chosen through a process of votes among the fans of the each nationalteam. Not everything has a bright side for this, just like in any other company or worldwideevent, the World cup has corruption involved with it. Even though the directors have tried tohide, the people and some of the partners of the FIFA Company are aware of it, now days. Eventhough the United States were one of the nominees for the World cup in 2016, they weredefeated by the country of Russia, over a numerally amount of votes. Soccer isn’t just about running around behind a ball and slide tackling others. It’s more ofa team game, which requires concentration and knowing how to work with others in order to
Fajardo 2score. Unlike other sports, soccer doesn’t focus on individual performances alone (“Article”).Instead, it teaches you top respect others and learn conflict management skills, by being moresocially involved with your teammates (“soccer”). For example, you might have been used togetting things done alone but in soccer in order for you to win; you must communicate and workwith your teammates and learn to accept and take in consideration other different points of viewfrom yours.Like for example, whenever there’s only just a few minute of game time left, theteam has to gather up together to come up with a new game plan in order to win the game, suchas assign a defender to a certain opposite player who might be the other’s team most importantplayer. The American Heart Association recommends children to play soccer because if it’splayed regularly it can be really beneficial for their hearts (“Kennedy”). Soccer warm ups consistof a mixture of aerobic activities such as sprint work and jogging, which help yourcardiovascular health and lowers body fat. It also works to improve your hand and footcoordination and balance as well. Some of the most common warm ups are simply stretchingyour whole body and jogging a little bit before the game, so that way once you start playingyou’re already with your muscles stretched out and not relaxed which can really lead to crampsor even worse, a strain (“Wachsmuth”). Active sports help you have stronger bones, by keepingyour body moving constantly, stronger muscles by working them out every time you exerciseand also, decrease the risk of developing type 2 diabetes as well as decrease the chance ofbecoming over weight for kids, which is a major problem here, in America (“Mack”). Student athletes are not only being rewarded health wise with being involved with soccer,but also educationally. High school student athletes earn scholarships because of their abilities toplay the sport. Just like a former student here, in Smithfield-Selma, earned a $10,000 soccer
Fajardo 3scholarship to Barton College, but it wasn’t just due to her soccer skills that she earned it, shealso had to keep up with her academic grades which are basically the main key point that openedthe doors to a brighter future ahead for her. She’s currently doing an excellent job with her teamand her career as well, which is not only making her parents proud but also letting her know thatanything can be possible as long as she keeps up with her good education (“Parrish”). But not everything is an advantage. In soccer, just like in practically any other sport, overexercising is a major problem. People believe that maybe if they exercise a little bit more, thatthey might have a better lifestyle. Little do they know, by over exercising, they’re actuallyhurting themselves. For instance, if you’re the type of person who’s not used to exercise, youshould really warm up and stay hydrated constantly. Bodies do have to be worked out, but if youwork them out excessively, we could be lead to a ligament torn, a cramp or even a broken bone.That’s why they should really remember to stretch before any type of exercise, and only exercisefor an average time. Many people get involved with soccer for the same reason, which is because they’vebeen basicallyborn with the passion for it. Recent coach and athletic director, Renato Freitas.During our interview together, he also said the same exact thing, he was born in Brazil; theybreathe, sleep and live for soccer. He started playing at the age of 9 in Brazil, but not everythingabout soccer has been a great thing for him. He has had serious injuries due to soccer. Six years ago he torn three ligaments and abone of his left knee in college, for which he played all of his 4 years for the Varsity team asCaptain. He also torn two other ligaments of his right knee as well as a broken finger and a twistand sprained knee, and let’s not forget multiple ankle sprains. Ever since he got involved with
Fajardo 4soccer he knew that whichever career he would go for, that it would definitely be related to suchsport. He went to college and played for the soccer team, for which he was the captain of sincehis freshmen year. After that, he started coaching for kid’s teams, such as Johnston UnitedSoccer Association also known as JUSA. He’s currently one of Smithfield-Selma’s math teacherand soccer coach as well and the Athletic director of Neuse Charter School, located inSmithfield.Mr. Freitas believes that sports should be a common thing among kids, not only as ahobby but as good workout for them, that is why after having so many injuries and knowing thathe could not keep playing for his own good, he started coaching, so he could teach young peoplewhat he had learned throughout life and his experience with soccer. But he thinks that in orderfor the kids to be able to learn what he would like to teach them, and then they should first showinterest for soccer. He believes that sports not only develop kids’ health and body but alsoprepares them mentally, socially and psychologically. They develop important skills, learn towork as part of a team and develop quick thinking skills. For instance, the more kids are aroundother kids the less they’ll suffer from being violent with others, because when they’re in a teamthey learn to communicate and share responsibilities with others (“Freitas”). So therefore, don’t think that playing sports is something unnecessary; it’s actuallysomething that should really be in everyone’s lifestyle for their own good. Just remember thatbefore you do any type of exercise, you should always, I mean always, stretch your bodycompletely and you’ll see that just by simply stretching, you are already helping your body. Thatis because even simply warm ups, such as jogging are already helping your cardiac system gatheroxygen and stay in good shape. But be sure to stretch adequately, and not excessively. But youshould really think about getting involved with a sport.
Fajardo 5 In conclusion, every sport has beneficial outcomes. Each simply played differently. Whatreally matters is being healthy in life and enjoying your free time. So come on, get up, stretchand let’s be healthy. Instead of being sitting down on a couch in front of the television all daylong, when you could be outside meeting new people and learning new skills, as well as stayinghealthy in life.