Finding the Balance: School and Sports

Hayden Galloway, Reporter

Doing sports as a student can be very exciting, but it also can be a great responsibility to maintain your grades and work hard in sports.

There is a variety of sports that all students can do around the school year, from volleyball, football, and cross country running in the fall to basketball and cross country skiing in the winter to soccer and track in the spring.

One major thing about school sports is the dedication to going to daily practices, minus Sundays. For sophomore Carson Pottinger, who played football and runs track and field, “Football practice was all during the summer, we’d get there around 11:00 am and could get out around five or six. And during the school year, it was every day right after school from 5:00 to 6:00-ish.”

For freshman Harrison Sturm, who ran cross country running and currently is on the varsity soccer team, the experience was very similar. “Soccer is 4:00-6:00 every day and on Saturdays it varies.” Sturms cross country running experience was the same, with daily practices every day of the week, including Saturdays and excluding Sundays.

With the daily practices, inconvenient times, and sometimes a heavy homework load, there’s a great possibility that sports will conflict with academics, which for a student athlete, is nothing new. Sturm says that he has a hard time balancing out homework and sports, because he also has other interests, like playing guitar. Sometimes Sturm will have soccer practice and will have a lot of homework to do, which will require him to stay up late finishing it, affecting his health and his sleep.

Balancing out sports and academics can be a challenging task for some people. Junior Natasha Larson, who is in the IB diploma program, says that in order to balance out sports and academics, “I go home and do my homework and then I have practice… and when I get home I’ll do homework ‘till like 11.” For Pottinger, he says balancing out homework and sports can be extremely hard. With track and field, depending on the time of practice, Pottinger can get home as late as 7 p.m., but with having homework, Pottinger has to stay up and finish his homework.

Academics and sports collide with each other is several ways. For some people, they have to skip sports because of projects, other people lose sleep because of too much homework and practice. One way or another, a large aspect of being a student athlete is the homework aspect. For Sturm, Larson, and Pottinger, all three of them sometimes lose sleep because of going to practice, and still having a large amount of homework. “I want to just lay down and sleep, but I have to do homework so it’s extremely tough to find the motivation to do it,” Pottinger says.

Life as a student athlete in any sport is very exciting, but that type of lifestyle brings with it its own challenges and responsibilities, and sometimes sacrifices in order to stay caught up in both school and sports.