In my free time, I enjoy a plethora of activities but I have come to the conclusion
that basketball is my all-time favorite pastime. Watching the sport
on television is just as enjoyable as playing it. Strangely, basketball has
always seemed to permeate my life in one way or another. Sometimes, I feel like
I was born to dream, live, and even sleep thinking about basketball. Basketball
is such an amazing sport and I cannot fathom living in a world in which the
sport did not exist. Nonetheless, basketball has impacted my life in such a
phenomenally positive way and definitely has molded me into the individual that
I am glad to be.
When I was about the age of 7 years old, I began playing basketball for the
city in which I resided. My parents had tried soccer, t-ball, swimming, and
even hockey but I was not interested at all. Basketball captured my heart. I
loved learning the defensive and offensive plays. When I played offense and
actually had the ball while dribbling down the court, I became unstoppable and
nobody could touch me. Adrenaline set in and nobody could stand in my way. Of
course I was on cloud nine when I shot a basket and actually made it. My
parents were always so supportive and cheered for my every move. They were
always so proud of me. I scored many points game after game. I was often the
MVP during the majority of my games during my early basketball
experiences. Also, my coaches loved me because I was definitely a true team
player and not a ball hogger. Game after game, I always felt so elated because I
was always able to contribute to my team in a positive way no matter if we won
or lost the games. However, it was always a much better feeling to win a game
than to lose as a young child.
As I became older, my experiences with basketball blossomed even further.
I played on a traveling/club team. Our team name was the Gym Rates. We played
in local tournaments and even some out of state tournaments. The highlights of
the year were the two national tournaments in Las Vegas, Nevada in June and
July. I enjoyed playing for the Gym Rats but I did not like the grueling 3 hour
practices on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays. My parents made me realize
that in order to be the best, I have to put in the time. Thus, I kept plugging
away at practice and it did eventually become a more fulfilling experience as my
skills greatly improved playing against stiffer competition. While on the
traveling team, I simultaneously played for my middle school basketball team.
There were four schools in my middle school league. Our school had to play the
other schools at least one time. Although my middle school team was horrible
and lost every game, I still enjoyed the competitiveness of the game and still
understood the meaning and necessity of teamwork.
After middle school, I continued my quest to play basketball in high
school. I had future hopes of becoming a professional athlete but I knew that
the road to become a professional athlete would be grueling and intense.
Luckily, my skills were so impressive that I made the Varsity basketball team
and I was only a freshman. I knew many other students would be jealous of me
but I could not let that dissuade me. I had painstakingly earned a spot to be on
the Varsity basketball team. Before the week of tryouts, my parents had
enrolled me in several endurance, strength training, and skills camps. They
knew that I had to stand out from the crowd. So when the tryouts came, I met
every workout with ease. When the season began, I had to become accustomed to
the 3 hour practices but I actually loved them. We did a variety of activities
which made the time pass quickly. I always tried my very best because I
remember my parents telling me that I had to put in the time. I made a
concentrated effort to being the best basketball player that I could...
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