Students pick up new hobbies to pass the time during quarantine


Credit: Milo Turner

Sophomore, Wolfgang Madonia, rolling down South Kalamazoo Mall St. Madonia can be seen skating downtown often, as well as at Davis Street Park.

Milo Turner, Social Media Team

Summer vacation: a student’s three-month weekend between school years, meant to be spent hanging out with friends and acquaintances, traveling, attending live concerts, summer camps, anything of the sort. Unfortunately, this summer students have not had the luxury of enjoying the majority of these pastimes safely. 

This year on March 19th, Michigan Governor, Gretchen Whitmer, announced a statewide closure of all K-12 school facilities due to the uptick in Covid-19 cases. What was originally intended to be a two week break evolved into a three month block of online learning, followed by a lengthy socially distanced summer vacation, leaving students to come up with new ways to fill the time they could have potentially been spending with friends had it not been for the ongoing global pandemic. 

Some of the most popular activities being practiced are biking, skateboarding and roller skating, as the sales in this equipment rose considerably throughout the era of CDC-advised social distancing. 

In the article from The Washington Post, ¨Thinking of Buying a Bike? Get Ready for a Very Long Wait,¨Author Emily Davies writes, ¨Bicycle sales nationwide surged by 50 percent in March, according to the NPD Group, a market research company.¨ 

However, skateboarding seems to be a fan favorite among students looking for a physically interactive interest. 

 Sophomore Wolfgang Madonia is one of the many individuals who have picked up skating during the summer. 

“I’ve met a lot of cool people through skating and gained experience filming for them and stuff. It’s a pretty good way to stay in shape too, I guess, so that’s cool,” said Madonia on the benefits of skateboarding. 

 Sophomore Hannah Getachew also picked up skateboarding as a result of quarantine, in addition to making her own clothing from scratch and growing houseplants. 

When asked about the benefits of her newfound interests, Getachew said, ”[I] never really got bored in quarantine with all my hobbies, and I get to sell the things I sew online for money.” 

Many other students have opted for indoor hobbies as well, such as junior Sophia Talo, who has established a new affinity for organization, in the style of Marie Kondo. 

“I don’t know if it’s a hobby or an interest, but I’ve been doing more organization stuff.” Talo continued, “I’ve been watching Marie Kondo a lot and it’s made me realize how messy everything is. So in my room I’ve gotten more organizers and bookshelves to put things away, and entirely cleaned out my closet along with the rest of the house.” 

Talo said, ¨Quarantine slowed down the pace of everything. Like I didn’t even realize that before I was moving through my day so fast and never had time for anything.¨ 

Specifics aside, picking up a new hobby can be incredibly beneficial for maintaining one’s mental health. 

According to a study performed by health psychologist Matthew Zawadzki, people who partake in hobbies that provide leisure or relief continue to feel better even after they are done practicing the hobby. 

¨Skateboarding makes me feel better,¨ said Madonia, ¨It just takes my mind off of things that are happening around me.” 

Maintaining stable mental health is such an important variable for students across the country and hopefully newfound hobbies can serve as solace in an era of stress and confusion.