By Myah Simms
Brien Mcmahon is composed of about 1800 students, out of these 1800, a good percentage of them are athletes who play a contact sport.
In high school, being on a sports team is a great way to make friends, add an extracurricular activity to your college resume, and build self confidence. The downside to sports are of course the injuries that follow them. Football, one of the most popular - but also one of the most intense - sports, is known for it's fatal and sometimes deadly injuries towards the head and heart. Joe Madaffari, gym teacher and athletic director at Brien Mcmahon, states that, “All of the coaches at Brien Mcmahon are fully certified to train all athletes in the safest way possible, however the athlete must practice safe playing tips to lower the risk of an injury.”
Every year, 1.35 million children between the ages of 4-19 are reported to have sports related injuries. However, these injuries are not your typical bumps and bruises from a game of catch in your backyard. They are usually serious enough to send the child to the hospital. Every 3 minutes a child was checked into an emergency room due to a sports related injury.
According to a study done by the American Academy of Pediatrics, they say the best ways to stay safe and injury free are by:
Planning your seasons - give your body time to rest
Wearing the correct equipment - check the requirements for your specific sport
Play safe - don’t only only worry about yourself, but your teammates as well.
Stay stretched and hydrated - before, during, and after practice/games
By planning your season out correctly, you’re allowing your body to have time to recollect and rest. Overworking your body can result in unwanted stress. Wearing proper equipment and playing safe are important because it lowers the chance of you or your teammates having a serious injury. Lastly, staying stretched and hydrated prevents pulls and tears in all of your main muscles and tendons. “My coach taught me the importance of stretching before practice,” says Eric Day (‘17), “I notice a change in my body when I stretch before a practice versus when I don’t, it really loosens my body up and allows me to be a better player on the court.”
Sports always have and always will be something done by billions of people all around the world. They are enjoyed by people of all ages, who share the common goal of wanting to win. With the technology we have today, hopefully there will be a way to ensure full safety while playing sports, but until then practice the tips listed above until they become a habit.
Injuries are never fun, but they do build character and allow you to analyze how you can play the game better. It's not about the amount of times you fall down, but the amount of times you get up. Your safety is your number one priority, but remember that all sports will have their occasional bumps and bruises - it comes with the game.
By Bryanna Perez
Photo taken by the Hour
When it comes to wrestling , weight can be a bit important. Boys and girls are forced to watch their weight in order for them to compete. Players have been known to starve themselves because of the situation and it may not be the healthiest for their bodies. It may not be easy but the players at Brien McMahon High School have definitely worked there way to success. The four captains at Brien McMahon, Nicolas Gonzalez, Felipe Silva, Jason Martinez, and Jeffrey Capone are very much on top of their weight as they give us a behind the scenes of what they did to prepare for their 2016-2017 wrestling season.
The way weight cutting works is that you decrease carbohydrate intake and slow down on drinking fluids. You also go into the sauna the day before a match to help get rid of a few pounds of excess water. If you are focusing on gaining weight you don't want to necessarily eat more but actually focus on gaining more muscle. The reason players lose or gain weight depends on the weight class that you are in. They do this so that there is no cheating and the match is fair.
“Before the season I weighed about 140 pounds. I had to lose eight pounds in order for me to compete in the 132 weight class,” Nicolas Gonzalez (‘17) explained to Pride Time. Although eight pounds may not seem like a large number it is actually harder than expected, in fact Gonzalez's food selection had to be limited. “I cut down on carbs, so I stopped eating less bread and rice, but that only meant that I had to focus more on eating vegetables and working on my cardio.”
Gonzalez’s teammate, Felipe Silva (‘17), also had to be careful on his choices of food as he is in the 160 weight class. “Before the season I weighed 167 pounds. I knew I had to be below 160 pounds. I had to cut down on all my carbs but it wasn't easy,” Silva told Pride Time. “The first week leading up to the first match was horrible. I was still five pounds overweight and I knew I had to lose it all right away because even if I was .2 pounds over, they wouldn't let me compete. On game days it gets even harder, drinking even the smallest amount of water is dangerous for me.”
So what actually happens if a player is overweight before a match?
“You put on a bunch of jackets and sweatshirts and start running laps, that way you sweat a lot and lose a lot of water weight quicker.” Silva explaining speaking from experience.
Captain Jeffrey Capone (‘17) also had to lose weight , but that didn't stop him from eating less. “Before the season I weighed about 176 pounds. I now weigh about 169-170 pounds. Yes I had to lose a little weight, but our practices are extremely intense that I lost the amount I needed to lose simply off of just practicing. Therefore I don't watch what I eat because I burn it off everyday.”
Captain Jason Martinez (‘17) wasn't so worried about his weight , but rather winning an FCIAC title. Unfortunately for Martinez, in order for him to win an FCIAC title he had to follow the rules and reach the weight expected in order to compete. “When I first started wrestling I didn't eat anything because I was new to the sport and had no idea how to diet properly. As I matured I learned a lot of things like “cutting.” Losing and gaining weight was never easy for Martinez when he first began the sport playing for the Norwalk youth program called Madbull. “Before the season I weighed 138 pounds, but I am now wrestling in the 145 weight class. I usually just eat light foods and barely anything on game days. It's after matches that I treat myself with chocolate chip pancakes, It's become a tradition of mine.”
The four captains continue to work super hard to make sure that there last season at Brien McMahon is memorable as their season so far is 6-2
By Darren Battle
A lot of All-Stars, the top tier title for the best players in youth leagues are not playing baseball anymore. 13 All-Stars over the past four years decided to end their careers at Brien Mcmahon and put their bats to retirement before their talents could reach its true peak. Baseball, “America’s favorite pastime” was the label for baseball until many kids times of playing passed. Many kids are not watching baseball and involvement in leagues has decreased. According to the Washington Post, in the 1990s there were about 3 million Little League players, but it dropped to nearly 2.4 million in 2012.
The lack of action may impact children disinterest. In Espn's top favorite 30 athletes voted by children, for the first time ever a baseball player was not seen on the list. According to the US Lacrosse survey In 2015 there were about 305,000 high school lacrosse players compared to the 297,000. Chris Druin (‘18), a former varsity baseball player who plans to make the transition into lacrosse from baseball, explained that in lacrosse the physicality and the speed makes lacrosse enjoyable while the patience in baseball is boring: “ The countless hours of reps in practice for a ground ball or two in a game.”
What could make something you love so much stop you from doing what you love? Brendan Huertas (‘17) played baseball for 8 years, made it to a state championship with his all star team and he even threw a no hitter but he gave it up to pursue a career for basketball. His answer to why he stopped playing was the same as Chris: “The speed of high school basketball was more exciting than baseball, and I knew I didn't have a career in baseball.” , When Chris and Brendan were younger they loved the sport and both claimed they had a passion for it. The patience of a minimum two hour game caused two great players to stop.
Many players leave the sport they once loved because they can’t stand the slow pace of a 2 hour game that does not have include a lot of action as there are many swings and misses/. In a hope to decrease the number of youth leaving and not watching the sport. The MLB has taken a look into the big issue of long games and experimented throughout the Arizona Fall league to put an end to wasting time. They use a 20 second timer for a pitcher to throw a pitch or else it's a ball. They also implemented a batter's box rule where a foot has to be in the batter's box during an at-bat. Another rule experimented was a three “time out” limit and a pitcher change timer that gives a new pitcher 2 minutes and 30 seconds to warm up and throw a pitch.
By Witshi Bienaime
This summer, Chelsea FC signing a variety of key players. These included N’Golo Kante, David Luiz, and Marcos Alonso. These were considered the signings of the summer by many sources including BBC Sports and the Sun. N’Golo Kante is considered one of the best midfielders in the world with a 88 percent passing accuracy and is the definition of a true workhorse. David Luiz came back to the team after leaving and is playing as if he never left in the first place. Considered a “liability” by many pundits to now the best ball playing center back in the league. The signing of Marcos Alonso was very key as well, mainly signed for the sole purpose of the 3-4-3 formation and has got the job done.
The changes that were very key were, the signing of N’Golo Kante, the changes of manager, and the change of formation. The signing of Kante is key because the man just doesn't stop running and leaves his all for the team. He played for Leicester City the year before and they won the league and they've been struggling since he left.The legendary manager Sir Alex Ferguson went on labeling him “the best player in the league”. The change of the manager is important as well, with Antonio Conte giving the team life and passion which was lacked as well as a never back down attitude. Conte has won the manager of the month for 3 straight months. Chelsea went from the 4-3-3 formation to the 3-4-3 where they went on a 13 game winning streak but the likes of Oscar Emboaba and John Mikel Obi had to go because he would not fit into Antonio Conte’s system.
From watching Chelsea Fc I think their most important player is Eden Hazard. Last season Hazard was out injured a lot and was not the fittest. However, towards the end of the season he started showing up and scoring again finishing the season with 4 goals. This season he has been on fire already scoring more than he did the whole last season with 9. When Eden Hazard is on top of his game so are Chelsea FC.
This Chelsea squad shows more ambition, pride, and passion. One of the major turnarounds was the beating of Manchester United at the Stamford Bridge where Chelsea won 4-0 against their old coach Jose Mourinho and have been on a tear since.
I questioned Brien Mcmahon students about how they felt about Chelsea this season.
Nicolas Medina of the 11th grade responded, “I feel that Chelsea are very strong this season with very important players that add to their success, such as Diego Costa, he’s been a clinical and efficient striker this season, Hazard has regained form from his past shaky season, Kante is a hard working engine alongside Matic.”
Marco Flores responded, “Costa is better than last year and same with Hazard. The defense is sort of shaky but they can settle it out also Courtois is still a beast.”
Nicholas Kruczkowski went on saying “I feel ever since Conte took over he made key signings that made the team stronger and all the players are playing with passion and respect each other and it’s that teamwork that will win them the Premier League.”