Cross Country Finds New Way to Motivate Runners

IMG_9813This year, the FHN Cross Country team has begun giving out a weekly award to the team members. It is called the Knight Award and is given out at the last practice of each week. The award is a sword and shield, given to one boy and one girl each week, who have worked hard at practices or helped to make the team better in some way. The Cross Country coaches and team captains decide who will receive the award.

“I think the Knight Award is great because it allows anyone to be recognized for their work, not just the top runners,” said sophomore Hunter Turpin. “I believe the rest of the team would agree because they might not feel all their work is recognized in meets, but this award can be achieved by anyone through hard work.”

Coach Kim Martin came up with the idea for the Knight Award during the 2016 track season. She wanted to find a way to promote hard work and motivate her runners. Martin decided to make it a rotating award. The team already had a weekly Gatorade Award the coaches give out, based on performance after each meet, but that award did not recognize as many people as Martin wanted to recognize. The Knight Award has been given to different runners for hard work, consistent work, staying positive and encouraging and inspiring their teammates.

“I decided to start giving the award, because cross has such a big team and recognizing two kids a week based on meet performance isn’t enough,” Martin said. “I wanted to recognize hard workers who won’t get a Gatorade Award.”

The award has motivated many of the runners to work harder and push themselves at practices, in order to receive recognition that they may not get for performance at meets.

“My favorite part about the award is that people are being recognized for working hard, not performance,” sophomore Claire Huss said.

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