Student Athletes: The Balancing Act

Josh Montano, Staff Writer

The constant need to balance the amount of dedication to club sports and high school sports has caused students to prioritize this balance over social activities.

According to an Ohio University study, there may be correlation between increasing dedication to athletics and a decreasing dedication to academics.

The extra stress of club play is exemplified in sophomore Jean Paul Zambrono, who is a player for the soccer club Loudoun Soccer.

“In spring, club practices at night and high school practices in the afternoon closed in on my time for homework,” sophomore Zambrono said. He thinks teachers could help with assigning less homework.

Zambrono has also sacrificed things other than sleep to manage time better to make space for homework.

“I don’t have enough time to do productive things like go to the gym and volunteering for things” Sophomore Zambrono added.

Time constraints from club activities is also a problem for junior Taylor Davis, who is a player on Virginia Elite.

“I have had problems with having time for studying, especially during club season, where I would drive one hour to get to practice until 10,” Davis expressed. Davis is also on the Stone Bridge Volleyball team.

Davis has sacrificed her social life in order to keep up with her studies, along with the adding time constraints from long, out of state tournaments.

“I wish some teachers would be more understanding to my limited time, and also be more available after and before school,” Davis said.

Football player Sophomore Jonathan Milles has problems with balancing the amount of homework and the amount of time dedicated to practicing with the Stone Bridge football team.

“I had so much homework when coming back from practice, and I sacrificed sleep, going out with friends, and going out to dinner with my family to finish it,” Milles said. He has improved his time management skills by dedicating specific times for finishing homework.

According to Deca Direct, ways to balance academics and extracurricular activities include time management, organization, and taking breaks.

“Well-planned and well-deserved breaks are necessary to help you recharge your batteries and stay focused on your high school and college goals.” Milles said. Smart break activities to do include reading, walking, and going out for coffee with a friend.

Milles thinks that teachers could help relieve his stress and increase his sleep.

“They could probably help me the most if they assign less homework, so then I could catch up on sleep,” Milles noted.

Students have mostly experienced cutting down on social time to set aside time for studying, but priority setting, organization, and breaks could help form a more balanced student.