How A Sport (Basketball) Changed My Life!

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   “There is no career in sports, she should stop wasting her time in stadium and concentrate on her studies”

this is what my neighbor suggested my mother when I left the class fifteen minutes early so that I could be on time for my daily basketball practices. The extra fifteen minutes was for to cater my bicycle’s punctured tire. I overheard her while I was rushing for the stadium and without paying any heed I went ahead with my schedule.

My parents have never been the imposing kind. I have always been good with my grades and my teachers also spoke very highly of me in every parent teachers meeting. They were least bothered with my inclination towards basketball, unless and until I mess up with my grades.

I joined basketball with few of my friends and very soon it became a lot more than just few hours away from home and studies. Just after few months of practice my coach gave me a chance to play in the stadium’s team in a local tournament. That was the first time when I felt that something was changing in me. Confidence was oozing out from every part of me. In a bigger sports fraternity it might not be anything but for me it was a life changing event. My parents were invited to watch the match and I could see how proud my father felt. Days turned into months and months into years and my sports accolades kept piling on and on. From local tournaments to school regional to school nationals to open states to open nationals I sprawled my victory wings everywhere.

It was then when I could sense myself changing again, I was evolving and becoming open to new challenges and ventures. I had overcome the fear inside me which has always prevented me in doing things out of my comfort zone.

I was inundated with certificates and medals and was also awarded the title of an all-rounder in school. Parents used to take my name as an example to show how one can balance and peruse their interest as well as studies.

School got over and college started and I got into engineering. Sports took a backseat but the sportsmen in me was never at rest. You can take the sport out of someone’s life but not the sportsperson in him.
“There is no women team in the college, girls here like to study only” this is what the sports instructor told me when I enquired him about the women involvement in the upcoming tournaments. Without thinking even once I said, “What if I can form one team, will you let us represent the college in the tournament?”

Knowing that it was an uphill task as the college was filled with studious kinds he agreed instantaneously. I was out on search for players to form a team and like they say where there is a will there is way. By the end of that fortnight I was ready with team with just the basic knowledge of rules and regulations of the game. I knew it wasn’t possible to teach them everything so I tried to capitalize on everyone’s strength. The taller one was responsible for the rebounds, the agile ones were responsible for defends and I was responsible for more and less everything.To my and everyone’s surprise we won the tournament, it wasn’t just any win it was a glorious win. After all the opponent team was also of the same level.

Standing in the middle of the court, under the blazing sun, sweating like pigs and the whole college cheering for us made me realized how much I have changed and grown up within just the past few weeks. I felt accomplished and celebrated. I sensed that my existence has brought so much to so many people.
There aren’t just few things that sports has changed in me, it has transformed and evolved me all together. My personality, my confidence and my attitude towards life is a benediction of sports. Practicing tenacity and embracing endurance are the two biggest changes that sports has brought in my life. I might have stopped playing but these changes are going to stay with me forever. I might be a regular engineer today but the sportsman spirit is still alive within me.

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