The Battle in the Pool
Anxiety is a type of mental disorder that can affect each person differently; it can be something that is developed over time or a person can have natural high anxiety. With swimming, anxiety can muster into something that can turn from the love of a sport into something that causes a large amount of anxiety for an athlete. Over the course of a swimmer’s career, the pressure that they face will start to build as they get further in their careers. From turning the success based on how they are performing into having to perform everything to help their team win a championship, their anxiety can be dismissed as nothing but nerves. Without getting proper help, athletes’ anxiety could have a negative effect on the outcome of their performances.
The Pressure of the Swim
Each athlete has a different approach when it comes to their sport. With swimming, it is as much of an individual sport as it is a team sport. When you race, the goal is to score points to help your team win the meet. The pressure of succeeding and performing well for the school can lead a swimmer down a dark hole that will fester into anxiety, which will affect their performance in both their sport and school. Some swimmers are not as deeply affected as others, but at some point in their career they will have to deal with some type of anxiety. It is often overlooked in athletes that anxiety can affect their performance, but that is an idea that is very far from the truth.
Iced, your paragraphs contain the right material, but they take awhile to get started. I know this is a tough practice to develop. You’ve been trained to “ease into” your material. It doesn’t work. There’s nothing that would compel a reader of your first sentence to read your second sentence.
Robust paragraphs are the same a Robust Sentences containing Robust Subjects and Verbs. Ask yourself what the REAL SUBJECT of your paragraph is. What’s the most ACTIVE way you can describe that idea? I’m going to answer those questions for you.
Your REAL SUBJECT is the swimmer who suffers anxiety. The most active way to describe that subject is that anxiety can RUIN a career or SHATTER confidence or DEMOLISH motivation. Compare those to your first-sentence verbs: IS / AFFECT / BE / DEVELOP / HAVE.
Your titles get it right: THE BATTLE / THE PRESSURE
Let’s work some magic on that first paragraph.
Swimmers start out loving the sport, loving competition, thrilling to their early achievements and accomplishments. They get nervous before meets, but that energy motivates them, keeps them sharp. The better they get, the more their team depends on them to win their events for the sake of the team’s success. They’re no longer swimming for their own sake. What used to feel like the support of their teammates has become added pressure from those same people either to win or to let everyone down. That amount of anxiety can kill their enthusiasm and undermine their performance.
Once we lay out the case that way, it’s clear that this first sentence does not serve our needs:
Once we lay out the case that way, it’s clear that this first sentence does not serve our needs: “Anxiety is a type of mental disorder that can affect each person differently; it can be something that is developed over time or a person can have natural high anxiety.”
Those OTHER PEOPLE with their DIFFERENT reactions are completely irrelevant.
Does this help you understand the value of active writing, not only for your introductions but throughout your essay?