Jul. 24—With the beginning of the 2021 Tokyo Olympics on Friday, some native athletic figures stay up for watching the video games regardless of COVID-19 restrictions.
Kayla Felty, assistant director of athletics at Penn State Schuylkill, stated she is worked up to see the athletes be capable of compete this yr after the video games have been postponed because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“I’ve a extremely deep appreciation for the athletes and what they’ve gone via mentally,” Felty stated. “They skilled for 4 years, then to have it postponed and nonetheless be in an unknown scenario, that have to be mentally taxing.”
Felty stated the uncertainty of whether or not occasions shall be canceled because of COVID-19 instances and the necessities for getting examined are certainly an added stress on the athletes, however she thinks the expertise will nonetheless be price it.
“Who is aware of if in 4 years you will be at your peak anymore,” Felty stated. “It is nonetheless definitely worth the alternative to go.”
One other facet Felty stated could also be difficult for the athletes is the restriction on spectators.
“Having no spectators could impression their mindset,” Felty stated. “Athletes actually feed off that crowd power, so it could change the way in which the video games function.”
As a former softball participant, Felty stated she is trying ahead to watching the softball video games, in addition to swimming. As a graduate of Villanova College, she additionally has a private connection to the boys’s basketball group, which shall be coached by Jay Wright, Villanova’s head coach.
Whereas Felty plans to look at these occasions, she stated she doesn’t assume the Olympics have as a lot buzz from viewers this yr.
“We’re all so numb from watching all the things occurring on-line and on TV,” Felty stated. “Folks may not keep in mind to tune in with a lot occurring on the planet.”
Felty stated the Olympics weren’t the one sporting occasion to be hindered by the pandemic, as athletics at Penn State Schuylkill and elsewhere noticed adjustments prior to now yr and a half.
“I am actually excited to see sports activities taking place once more, whether or not it is on the Olympic, faculty or highschool degree,” Felty stated.
Sharon Klinger, proprietor of Schuylkill Aerial and Wellness in Pottsville, stated after the Olympics have been postponed final yr because of COVID-19, she is much more excited to look at the video games this yr.
“I have been trying ahead to all of it yr,” Klinger stated. “I marked it on my calendar. Although there shall be a time distinction, I plan to look at as a lot as I can.”
The principle occasion Klinger plans to look at is gymnastics. Klinger stated she enjoys seeing new strikes and routines from gymnasts all around the world, however particularly Simone Biles of Staff USA.
Whereas the setting is likely to be totally different this yr with COVID-19 restrictions, Klinger stated she thinks there is likely to be some advantages.
“It could change the thrill with the gang not being there, however the gymnasts could have extra capacity to pay attention,” Klinger stated. “I count on they are going to be on their finest efficiency.”
As a health teacher, Klinger has a specific curiosity in gymnastics. She opened her aerial yoga studio in 2019 and stated watching Olympic gymnastics has helped drive her ardour.
“As a toddler, many people had a objective to be within the Olympics,” Klinger stated. “Even when you do not make it, you can begin at any age and nonetheless pursue your passions in life.”
Klinger stated watching athletes within the Olympics reveals that pursuing these passions takes time and observe.
“So long as you will have a willingness to study, you are able to do something,” Klinger stated.