Track and field is one of those sports that a wide variety of people can be good at and enjoy. From sprints to distance to jumping or throwing events, the skills needed to be a talented track and field athlete are developed when we play other sports growing up. But many people shy away from track thinking they don’t like running (probably because it was usually a punishment in their other sports) or that they don’t know if they will be any good.
As my high school track coach, Jerry Mohr, always used to say, “No one ever grew up playing little league track!” It’s so true; the sport is brand new to everyone when they come out that first year. If you get started in middle school or early high school, you are starting at the same time as everyone else! Track is such a rewarding sport, as it combines team oriented camaraderie with individual competition. And the best thing about it is that you can keep running and competing for your entire life.
Track is a simple sport to get started in because you need almost no equipment! You should get fitted for a good pair of training shoes so you don’t get injured, get some moisture-wicking socks in your life, and buy a pair of track spikes to compete in- way better than the cleats, pads, mouth guards, etc. required with many other sports! Spikes are light-weight shoes that get you up on your toes to help you race faster at meets. They typically only cost about $60 and high school and college athletes get a 20% discount on them at Tri-State Running Company! Many teams come out as a group for a spike night where the employees at the store can fit each athlete for a spike that matches both their feet and their event.
Whether you (or someone you know) are thinking about going out for a track team or wondering what this sport is all about, this is the year to find out! Go watch a meet to see the excitement on someone’s face when they hit a new personal best time or the teamwork it takes to be successful in a relay race. Track teaches athletes from a young age to set goals, overcome a variety of difficulties to meet them, and to believe in themselves. I couldn’t recommend it highly enough, as my own experiences with the sport couldn’t have been more positive. Throughout my high school and collegiate career as a track athlete, I met some of my best friends and most encouraging mentors. I learned what my body and mind were capable of, and that makes a difference each and every day in what I can accomplish in other areas of my life. When you decide track might be for you, stop by Tri-State Running Company to try out some spikes and learn more about the sport!