Coming up short; Being a good sport

Alison Grafton, Health and Science Editor

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In athletics, losing can be one of the most devastating things, and learning to cope can be challenging. NH’s coaches help many student athletes with managing how to deal with coming up short.

    Varsity tennis coach Ms. Emilie Keith says that “talking about the loss and coming up with a way to improve for next time,” is the best way of coping. It lets the players “vent about what went wrong and why.” From here, Keith comments that the team comes up “with an immediate plan to fix it.”

When Keith was an athlete, she tried to handle losing with a positive attitude. Just like others, she was frustrated at first with the loss, but would then “analyze everything I could have done differently.” Keith says one of the things she would realize is “it is just a game and that there will be others that will give me the ability to redeem myself.”

Mr. David Orth says his opinion on losing as the varsity boys soccer team is much different than his opinions when he played. He used to get very upset with a loss. He is a “remarkably competitive person, so losing never sits well.” Now that Orth is a coach, he still has his competitiveness that makes losing difficult, but he has learned that there is different types of losses. “Losing a game when we played well and faced a superior opponent is one thing; it entirely different to lose a game that we should have one.”

Losing also is an opportunity to learn. The soccer coach says that “losing a game can reveal areas of weakness that I can address in practice.” This can help the team from making the same mistakes.

    Many important lessons can come from losing. Orth said that athletes need to realize there will always be someone better or a better team. “It’s about the process of becoming the best you can be,” he said.   The soccer coach added that It is more about individuals making themselves better athletes, teammates, and people through games, practice, and sessions in the gym says Orth.

   Former boys soccer and lacrosse coach Mr. Brady Green says that losing is very difficult but “being a good athlete is learning to lose.” He believes that athletes should try to stay positive and not dwell on. “If you lose a game, you should not  think about it(losing); you need to think about moving forward and to move forward and shake it off.”