Letters from the dorm: Be a good sport abroad

Letters from the dorm: Be a good sport abroad

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If you study abroad, be sure to try a sport like tennis.
If you study abroad, be sure to try a sport like tennis.
Photo: Felix Wong/SCMP
Your studies are a key part of life at boarding school. So should be sports.

Doing sports allows students to release all the pent-up energy they've built up while studying in small, stuffy dorm rooms. And you can do so in a relaxing, fun but physically satisfying manner.

One of my favourite parts of the day during term time consists of heading out to the tennis courts for a good thwack against some willing opponent.

Win or lose, sports help release some much-needed endorphins - hormones that are vital for mental wellbeing. As a bonus, these hormones are also a great stress reliever.

Even if you're not all that good at sports, you should still go out and make the most of the sporting activities your school provides. Then you can make new friends, too.

Having a common interest in a sport is a great way to bond with others, especially if you're a member of some kind of team. Activities that involve teamwork, like football games, often help the individuals on a team become much closer off the pitch as well.

There is no better place than boarding school for sports. Before I went to school in England, I attended the Stingrays Swimming Club in Hong Kong four or five times a week, for two hours at a time. But I never really enjoyed it.

When I came to Winchester College, I realised that football, squash and tennis were all sports that I could really have fun doing. Team sports are much better for bonding among mates than swimming.

It helped that I could choose a certain sport and when I wanted to do it. The facilities are available every day, along with training and games, so you're spoiled for choice.

So if you study abroad, be sure to try a new sport - or to continue the one that you already take part in. After all, your parents are paying hefty fees. So make sure to take advantage of the academic, as well as the sporting, facilities in your school.

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