Appointment and Contact Sports

Discussion in 'Naval Academy - USNA' started by atanglejwoodg, Dec 6, 2018.

  1. atanglejwoodg

    atanglejwoodg New Member

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    Hello,

    This past week I received a congressional nomination. Now, as I already had an LOA, I have been offered an appointment for the class of 23. I however, have been growing increasingly nervous of getting injured during this current hockey season and am having a hard time making a decision about what to do. I know it is recommended to quit all contact sports once gaining an appointment, but I have played hockey for 14 years and my teammates are like my second family. Also, if I quit I will most certainly be outcasted by them and called a “traitor” or “soft”. Yet, at the same time, I risk a terrible injury that could disqualify me from my future. I know the academy is about learning to make these tough decisions, and any input would be greatly appreciated.


    Please excuse and grammar or spelling mistakes—I typed this on my phone.
     
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  2. billyb

    billyb 5-Year Member

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    Totally up to you, but I wouldn't quit hockey. You've done it for 14 years. Do your thing. I wouldn't take unnecessary risks like skydiving, rock climbing etc... unless you have done those for many years and are very experienced. There's a chance you can get injured, but there's also a chance that you can trip and fall down the stairs at school too.
     
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  3. brewmeist

    brewmeist Member

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    If they are true teammates and friends, they will understand what an incredible opportunity you have and will respect your decision if you choose not to continue playing. If not, give them a smile and know that this is the most important decision of your life. Don't think you are being selfish. This is your decision either way. There is no right or wrong choice, but do not let what others think sway you.
     
  4. NavyHoops

    NavyHoops Super Moderator 5-Year Member

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    Do you want to play hockey this year? If the answer is yes, then play. Play hard, have fun and be a great team mate. If you get hurt, get healthy and back out there. If you get hurt bad, then have a Plan B of where you would go, reapply (probably with another LOA in hand) and enjoy the year of college. Adult decisions often have adult consequences. It’s about knowing the risks, analyzing them and having contingencies. Good luck.
     
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2018
  5. MidCakePa

    MidCakePa Member

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    +1 to @billyb and @NavyHoops. Continue doing what you love, especially if it’s on a team that’s been part of your life for so long — and as long as it doesn’t involve undue risk.

    I don’t know where you got the idea that you should stop contact sports once you receive offer of appointment. Not true at all. We sometimes joke about “bubble wrap,” but that’s mainly a way of saying “don’t do anything stupid or take unnecessary risk,” such as skydiving.

    My DD started playing ice hockey at 6 years old, she loved it, and no way she would have stopped just because of offer of appointment. At the same time, as captain of the non-contact tennis team, she could have sprained a knee or an ankle, and that would have kept her from swearing in on I-Day.

    As noted above, you can hurt yourself just walking down the stairs. Be smart, but don’t crawl back into bed and assume the fetal position either.
     
  6. SpchGrl

    SpchGrl New Member

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    Yikes! I had no idea a sprained ankle could delay or even derail your dreams. Is that really true?
     
  7. FMHS-79

    FMHS-79 Parent

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    Yes - physical activities are an integral and essential components of plebe summer. If you don't show up on I-day physically able to participate, then a deferral or other action is likely (depending on the specific nature of the injury).
     
  8. usna1985

    usna1985 10-Year Member

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    A minor sprain that keeps you out for a few days probably won't derail you. However, if you're deemed unable to participate in activities for any appreciable length of time, that could be an issue. It's obviously up to the medical folks and each case is unique.

    In terms of the OP's question . . . we never even considered this in my day. The bottom line is that accidents can happen in all sorts of ways but to have an injury in the next few months that is serious enough to affect you come (approx.) 1 July, is extremely unlikely.

    Most folks recommend not doing anything "stupid" -- taking up high-risk activities for the first time, doing them while intoxicated (which raises multiple issues), doing stuff that adds no benefit but incurs risk (crazy skateboarding), etc. I agree with the others that, if you want to play hockey, do so.
     
  9. MemberLG

    MemberLG 5-Year Member

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    Who made such recommendation - perhaps yourself?
     
  10. Soldiergriz

    Soldiergriz Husband, Dad, Soldier

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    Who is recommending you quit?

    Your teammates matter...don't quit. Don't ever quit...
     
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  11. GH148

    GH148 Member

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    As a father with a DD with two LOA's and potential appointment as well we've had the same argument at my home. The sport is softball in the spring. I have argued to to avail to not play the Sr. season, the counter-argument is "I'm a Sr. and this will the the last time I play, so I'm playing". If an injury occurs after say May 1, then even plan B, C, D are not even available anymore. I guess the decision is up to the individual but there are consequences if the injury is severe enough. I'm sure there are many in the same situation.
     
  12. MidCakePa

    MidCakePa Member

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    @GH148, I understand your fear. My DD played hockey and tennis throughout high school, and ran cross country in senior year to prepare for CFA and Plebe Summer. One misplaced step into a gopher hole during a XC race — there are plenty where we live — or one awkward twist while changing direction and she could have been looking at a dream deferred.

    But conpeting was very important to her, especially as tennis team captain, and quitting would have put a serious damper on her senior year. She would have felt selfish, like she was letting her teammates down after so many years of gunning for a collective goal. So my “bubble wrap” jokes aside, the thought never crossed my mind that she should quit.

    I don’t know your DD, but I’m guessing that major reasons for her LOAs are her competitiveness, athleticism, teamwork, discipline and resilience — all products of playing varsity sports. Easy for me to say, because she’s not my DD, but would hate to see her quit the very things that helped put her in position for an appointment.
     
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  13. Soldiergriz

    Soldiergriz Husband, Dad, Soldier

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    Prepare the young man or woman for the path.

    Avoid preparing the path for them.

    My opinion after leading these incredibly gifted young men and women for nearly 27 years.
     
  14. Old Navy BGO

    Old Navy BGO 5-Year Member

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    Hockey is part of who you are, and what got you an Offer of Appointment. Sure , you can get hurt playing hockey , or you can trip down the stairs at school. Be yourself ...go out play hockey like you always have. You will be happier.

    As an aside, there is talk about bubblewrapping every year...mostly from parents. The Navy and Marine Corps needs young officers that are confident, go getters...not young men and women that are looking over their shoulders or worrying about what might happen. That was what was most fun about serving ....being with like minded guys who were full of piss and vinegar and relatively carefree. We didn't worry about "what might happen....", perhaps to our detriment sometimes. (Don't get me wrong, operational safety was paramount...but beyond that big blue bible called NATOPS, we had some fun).
     
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  15. ProudDad2022

    ProudDad2022 Member

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    My DS is a foundation kid and he wants to play baseball for his current school. He understands the consequences but, he's 18 and invincible. I kinda hope he gets cut :)
    In all seriousness though, I agree with the anything can happen anywhere at anytime philosophy.
     
  16. helmsdown

    helmsdown Member

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    SB was DD's sport. She was a four year starting catcher for her HS team. She was a recruited player but passed to accept her appointment. She did continue to play up until the Sunday before IDay. Even had a walk off to put icing on the cake. We discussed what would happen if she broke a wrist or did something to a knee but she did not want to miss her senior year. Most of the kids going to a SA aren't the type to quit a sport that helped make them who they are. I held my breath a number of times including that Sunday when she was involved in a collision at the plate. Good luck to you and your DD.

    FWIW, she is on the club SB team at USNA as they try to repeat as National Champions.
     
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