Fall Sports Amid the Pandemic


The band had the opportunity to play at several football games this season.

The pandemic has turned all the lives of the community upside down. However, students still have something to look forward to: sports!

5 athletes expressed their views on how virtual/hybrid learning and Covid-19 has impacted their lives in sports. All students were asked the same 4 questions and were given unlimited time to answer. 


1. How is the team staying safe while playing sports amid a pandemic?

When discussing safety measures, all participants said that their respective teams wear masks, social distance when possible, and limit external contact. Specifically, the football team has been “keeping all practices outside and we have cut out all team meals,” said football player, Karl Bloomfield. Kingsway soccer player, Kyle Kirwin, further discussed safety procedures as they were “using [their] own soccer balls and [their] own water bottles.” The tennis team “wears masks while huddling” and is socially distanced on the court, Ada Loyd said. 


2. How are things different from last year? (bonding, health, etc.)

Clearly, the pandemic has taken a significant toll on sports, as circumstances are exceptionally different compared to other years. Ada mentioned that “team bonding is difficult because you have to wear masks and you have to be socially distanced, and I feel like that can be a little challenging when you want to be a team, but we made it work this year and I’m actually really proud of our team.”  Furthermore, most sports had shorter seasons due to the lack of summer practices and the cancellation of most events. Kyle elaborated on how bonding has been affected by the shorter season: “we had to get to know each other during tryouts, which was difficult”. Additionally, players from the football team had a positive stance, as Steven mentioned that “everyone [the players] came together better because we wanted a season and wanted to do well, so I feel like we actually bonded better.” 

Also, Karl expressed that he was happy to have a new football field this season instead of practicing at the Rowan University field as they did last season.


3. How are you feeling mentally due to this situation? (stress, anxiety, etc)

Ally explained that participating in cross country can be stressful “because it could be cancelled anytime”. Steven mentioned how he is still having fun playing football, but “in the back of my mind, I still need to stay safe, so I’m more cautious.” ON the contrary, Karl “feels fine with the situation”                                                           and is “happy we can still play [football].”


4. Has virtual/hybrid learning had an impact on sports? (Has sports been an outlet for you?)

The shift to Schoology and virtual/hybrid learning has been a difficult and tiresome process, but Kingsway athletes are making the best of it. Kyle said that “sports is like a getaway after being on Zoom all day long.” Ada agreed saying, “I think for everyone, playing tennis was definitely an escape away from school, because everyone was so stressed out and always staring at the screen.” Ally, who is also an all-virtual student continued the conversation by mentioning how “being with my family all the time can be suffocating.” Teenagers need their own space, and being at home all the time with the same people can get tiring.


Although this school year will continue to be challenging, our Kingsway athletes have proved that resilience and a positive outlook can help us get through it.