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All I did was play basketball; Common Application Essay #1

sopanhatun 1 / 1  
Dec 15, 2012   #1
Topic I chose was, Evaluate a significant experience, achievement, risk you have taken, or ethical dilemma you have faced and its impact on you.


As a sixth grader my mind was narrow, basketball to me at that time seemed like an easy sport. All you had to do was put the ball in the hoop, how hard was that? However, during my first game I realized that this was not true. The moment when the ball was in my hand, was when my fear of being incompetent crept up on me, I froze and I did not know what to do. The was ball stolen from me and I helplessly watched the other team scored. At the end of practice the coach came over and gave me some advice. He said 'If you want something bad enough, you have to work for it, and if you work hard enough nothing will stop you from getting it, don't give up yet, no one is a lost cause'. I went to every practice and my basketball skills improve. At the end I was not picked for the team. Disappointment was what I felt, not because I did not make it into the team but because I knew I could have worked harder.

Starting from the summer of 7th grade all I did was play basketball, holidays, weekends, recess any opportunity to play basketball I grasped it. When try outs finally came I made it into the team. The feeling was amazing, after putting in all that effort I finally made it into the team. The team went on to winning the championship. For the first time in my life I felt that I have accomplished something. The joyfulness was overwhelming, and that moment in time I felt alive.

Basketball made me overcome my fear of feeling incompetent. After winning the championship I became a new person. I started to play different sports and participated in activities that I have not tried before. I discovered talents that I never thought I had. My scores in school improved, and this is due to the realization that hard works pays off and when you fail you have to pick up yourself and try harder. Success is not given you have to earn it.

Other valuable lesson that I learnt from playing basketball was that being unselfish is good for you, not only will you make some feel better but you will also feel better for doing an unselfish deed. It also taught me the benefit of teamwork. You do not always have to do things on your own, you can always ask people for help. My skills of working in group has developed, as I have learnt to listen to instruction and when needed to take an initiative and be the leader.

Basketball will always be my favorite sport. It is a fun a sport and there is a lot of valuable lessons that can be gained from playing it. I hope that children from the next generation will continue to play this wonderful game.

Any suggestion would be fine, especially for a title, I'm not s great with titles.
AryanK 5 / 20 3  
Dec 15, 2012   #2
Sopanhatun I think your idea is good. You have explained well that how basket ball has helped you learn and experience new things and how it has transformed you from a "narrow minded" person in to a brave person but there are a few things that I believe you need to look in to.

First of all I feel that you have written a lot about the impact of basket ball practice and you have not sufficiently explained your experience,

I mean the struggle the amount of work or the effort that you had to put in to and how it felt. What did you gain while practising for long hours.

Secondly, I feel that you should read your essay aloud because I find many grammatical errors like Tense errors and unidiomatic expressions etc.
Thirdly, I guess you should address the impact as a concluding paragraph. You have written three paragraphs on just the impact.

I hope it helps.

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