The water in natatoriums is calmer. The balance beams, uneven bars and vaults have been moved out of sight.

The water in natatoriums is calmer. The balance beams, uneven bars and vaults have been moved out of sight.

There are still basketballs bouncing in gyms, but not with the same intensity. Wrestling mats have been rolled up and pushed against walls for safekeeping.

Bowling alleys and skating rinks now have more time for public use.

High school winter sports have ended and the transition to spring sports is complete. Baseball, boys and girls lacrosse, boys tennis, boys volleyball, crew, softball and track and field are under way, and the final chapter of another prep sports year has begun.

In my world of following high school sports, spring brings a major change from the season we just left behind. From the hectic rush of the high school basketball tournaments and the conclusion of the other winter sports, we arrive at what seems like a slower and welcome introduction to a time of year that puts smiles on the faces of people tired of being battered by winter weather. Even though the efforts of the athletes involved with spring sports are just as great as those in fall and winter, it just feels good to, for the most part, move from indoors to outdoors.

Here are some things that I truly enjoy about the activities that began this week:

Boys volleyball OK, so you have to be inside to watch this sport, but it is the power exhibited by the athletes that makes this sport so exciting. It is so fun to watch a team work together to set up a kill by a player and the anticipation of the spike, the act I enjoy most in a match.

Lacrosse Remember the days when the only places you could go to watch this fast-paced sport was Upper Arlington and Worthington? Not anymore. Go to almost any suburban community after school lets out and you will find young people with lacrosse sticks. The sport is so popular with the youth of today because it combines agility and quickness. Sit up high in a stadium and watch plays unfold. It is what I love to do when the Blue Jackets play hockey and when high school girls or boys play lacrosse.

Crew The absolute high in sports aesthetics is to head out to Hoover Reservoir or to the Scioto River, just north of Griggs Dam, and watch a regatta on a beautiful spring day. It doesn't matter to the athletes who work hard together to gain their best times, but a beautiful day makes for a beautiful picture of athletes in action.

Boys tennis I sort of feel about tennis like I feel about volleyball. Girls have wonderful finesse when they play these sports while boys, much of the time, rely on power. On the tennis court, like at the volleyball net, there is the moment when a player is ready to slam the ball that anticipation takes over and you are excited to see the outcome.

Baseball When I was growing up in the 1950s, this was the summertime sport and you loved it and I still do. I believe it is the greatest sport of the mind there is. Is a runner going to steal? Do you sacrifice or hit away? Do you send a runner home or hold him? Do you throw another fastball or try a curve or change-up? Something different happens on every pitch, and that is exciting.

Softball Of course, most of the same elements I just mentioned in baseball apply here, but then there is the dominance of the pitcher. Find a good hurler and you have a good chance of winning. Watching talented high school pitchers is a joy, and the challenge for every batter to just hit the ball is intriguing.

Track and field This may be my favorite sport to watch because of myriad events that you can focus on. The pressure on the high jumpers and the long jumpers, the fearlessness of the pole vaulters, the power of the athletes throwing the discus and shot, the durability of the distance runners, the explosiveness of the sprinters all are mesmerizing to me. But my absolute favorite are the relays, with four people chasing one time with no room for error on the exchange of that little baton. What a challenge.

Spring sports are here go enjoy them. Next week I will give you some specific individuals and events to see before the middle of June arrives.

I'll see you at a game.