High School Sports

High school athletes getting back into shape after long lay off


Olivia Reed admits she didn’t stay in top form during the pandemic, but her along with thousands of high school athletes across the state of Indiana are all working to get back into shape since they returned to practices and conditioning workouts just a little over two weeks ago.

“Honestly I wasn’t very good about keeping myself in shape during quarantine,” the Crawfordsville three-sport athlete said. “So it was an eye opener when workouts started. It was super hard the first few days, but once a few days went by it got better. This is definitely something that we have to adjust to and we weren’t really prepared for. I think all of us athletes and coaches are adjusting well even if it’s not how we are wanting it to be.”

Fellow Athenian volleyball teammate Laine Schlicher said while she did her best during quarantine, she has gradually worked at getting back into shape since the end of May.

“It has felt better than ever being back with my teammates and coaches,” she said. “During quarantine, the coaches have us plate workouts to do three times a week and it helped me so much with the adjustment of coming back. The coaches have done a fabulous job getting us and keeping us in shape since the end of May.”

Spring athletics were sidelined in mid March, and eventually canceled, while summer workouts for all athletes were prevented from starting until schools reopened at the beginning of July.

On the gridiron, Crawfordsville senior Andrew Martin says the Athenians are working together to get back into a groove.

“I felt like I stayed in good shape during the time away,” he said. “It has been hard to adjust to this. Not everybody was in shape, so we had to get everybody on the same page, which takes time. Every team has had to do the same things we do. It’s our job as a team to be the most prepared that we can possibly be to get a head start on the season.”

At North Montgomery, Benjamin Pietsch, a three-sport junior and returning lineman for the Charger football team has made working out a priority since the track and field season was canceled back in March.

“During quarantine and isolation, I made it a priority to attend Zoom workouts hosted by coach Thompson every day,” he said. “I even did the Friday challenges every week. I have been trying to get ‘one percent better’ as coach Thompson will often say. I was unsure of if and when I was going to be able to return to sports, but I knew that it was important to be doing something every day to better myself for whatever sport I could return to. Once summer weights and conditioning restarted earlier this month, I have been super excited to see my teammates again.”

Sidney Campbell, a North Montgomery senior soccer player also tried to stay true a fitness plan during the time away.

“While everyone was quarantined I tried my best to follow the fitness plan that coach Hodges made for the team,” she said. “I’ve always been one of those players that is motivated by the team atmosphere and so as the weeks we were all separated increased, I found it more and more difficult to get motivated each day to get my fitness in. As a result of that, personally, it has been quite a shock to the system to jump right back in to swimming and soccer practice every day.”

Beckett Jett, who is the returning top goal scorer for the Mounties’ boys soccer team had his club season canceled as well, so it was up to him to stay in shape.

“I had to take it upon myself to train for the upcoming season,” he said. “It was a weird transition when the school condition began because of the screening and because of how different everything was, but Southmont has done a great job of keeping things organized and efficient.”

Across the sideline, fellow Mountie and senior Addi Charles says she feels like she should have ran more during the time off, but is just excited to be back on the pitch with her teammates.

“The PLT4M (A series of workouts organized by Southmont) workouts did help with my strength and mobility greatly, but I definitely should have ran a lot more. I am very blessed to be able to be back with my fellow peers and teammates to have an awesome senior season in all my sports.”

Athletes are back at practice, but while the plans are in place to return to competition in mid-August, the unknown from the COVID-19 pandemic remains present. North Montgomery girls’ soccer coach Julie Hodges continues to keep things in perspective.

“Coach Hodges has repeatedly reminded us that ‘we can only control what we can control,’” Campbell said. “It’s a reminder to our team that while lots of things going on in the world right now are out of our control, each of us has the ability to control our effort, attitude, and concentration in practice and that’s what we should be focused on.”


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