CAS senior and captain of the women’s golf team Arisa Kimura did not expect to spend her second semester attending middle-of-the-night classes, watching television (her current show of choice is “Terrace House”) and, most ambitiously of all, working on a 1000-piece puzzle of Mount Fuji.
“It’s all blue and white so it’s pretty difficult,” Kimura said.
For many NYU athletes like Kimura, the excess hours afforded by self-quarantining feel more unusual than they do to most. The coronavirus outbreak has created an unexpected surplus of free time for some — time that would normally be spent competing to extend their undefeated season or starting the defense of their national championship. Some have tried to schedule out their time to introduce some degree of consistency.
“I didn’t think I would have as set of a routine as I do,” Kimura said. “I have some resemblance of normalcy, which I didn’t think I would be able to do.”
While some might have more of a set routine than others, all NYU athletes have faced a similar challenge upon the school closing: they have to figure out how to best replicate the team workouts with limited equipment. The loss of access to athletic facilities is only half of the problem. With teamwide online workouts banned by the NCAA in order to avoid giving any competitive advantages, the onus is on the students to maintain their fitness or work on their game.
There are certain students who have been better equipped to train in quarantine than others. SPA junior and member of the men’s basketball team Jaden Narwal misses the camaraderie he felt during teamwide spring pick-up games. Thankfully, he has a small in-home gym, and not all of his workouts are done solitarily.
“I’m lucky because my dad is crazy,” Narwal said. “He is very into fitness, health and wellness.”
Like Narwal, CAS senior and the captain of the baseball team, Sal Cammisuli, has spent his time in quarantine working out and playing baseball with his little brother.
“Just training my little brother hopefully for his baseball season coming up,” Cammisuli said. “I’ve been working on his game all around.”
Another student who has taken advantage of their home equipment is Cammisuli’s teammate, and SPS sophomore, Grant Berman. When he is not using the netted batting cage in his backyard, Berman has been following a regimented workout routine.
“I have been using this time to stay in playing shape while working on becoming faster,” Berman said. “I spend two to three days a week doing agility work along with six days a week in the weight room.”
Those who do not have the setup to workout from home have found other creative ways to keep their games sharp. Many have found self-paced workout apps and YouTube channels helpful for their fitness goals. Stern junior on the women’s tennis team Anna Maria Buraya, has been using the Nike training app to stay active. A fellow Stern junior and a member of the women’s soccer team, Fransceca Dimitrakis, has supplemented her use of a home workout app called Verv with workouts posted by fitness channels on YouTube.
In addition to finding individual workouts that best work for their respective situations, many NYU athletes have made concerted efforts to not let social distancing erode their team unity. The women’s soccer team competes in footwork challenges, responding to videos sent by Assistant Coach Scott Waddell with their own videos replicating his footwork. Many of the teams also frequently meet over Zoom, whether as a whole or in smaller groups.
But, as many of the athletes have realized, online communications cannot fully replace face-to-face interactions — especially for seniors whose final college season and academic year were unexpectedly cut short. For them, the end of quarantine, whenever it might be, will hopefully give them the chance to get their final closure.
“Hopefully [I’ll] meet up with a bunch [of friends] so we can get to the city to receive the closure we all needed as seniors in college,” Cammisuli said. “Be able to go out with one last good-bye, and not just on an abrupt notice.”
A version of this article appears in the Monday, April 13, 2020, e-print edition. Email Kevin Ryu at [email protected]