Balancing It All

Athletes’ struggle with handling stress and balancing academics with their athletic responsibilities.


Alyssa Neal

Jade Harter asks geometry teacher Lisa Sonntag for help with the homework. Harter is involved in basketball as well.

Abby Muller

The life of a student is hard, but the life of an AHS athlete or participant in school activities is even harder. Students at AHS are juggling it all. 

Some athletes don’t have an off-season. Four-season athlete junior Jada Jensen said, “During volleyball season, it’s basketball, during basketball, it’s softball, during soccer, it’s softball, and during softball, it’s summer weights and open gyms for volleyball and basketball.” 

Part of the struggle is keeping up with school work. Spanish teacher and multi-sport coach Daniel Vargason ensures his athletes know that student activities come first. “It’s a shift in time management,” said Vargason. “Most have figured it out […] there are a few with questions.”

A study conducted by Challenge Success says 2018 to 2020, the average student spent 2.7 hours doing homework per weeknight. Some students have hours to do difficult assignments and need time to do their longer essays or presentations. Many student-athletes, however, don’t always have that luxury, with practices being hours long and meets often being day-long. 

“Having late road games and having a lot of homework to do on the bus is not a good study environment, so I save it for when I’m home and [I] have to stay up late,” said Jenson. She spends about 3 hours on the weekends doing her homework. 

Coaches at AHS want the best for their students and athletes. Head varsity football coach Joseph Brummer said “We make accommodations to get the school work done.” Most coaches want athletes to prioritize academics so they can continue participating in athletics. “There was one time when I was late to practice because I was finishing a math test,” said senior Lee Houser. Houser’s coach completely understood the prioritization.

Student-athletes at AHS always strive for the best. Encouragement and support from other teammates, parents, teachers, and coaches make it possible for them to push through.