The Double Life of a Student Athlete at AHS

Many students balance sports and school work.


Anna Potts

Some students struggle to make time for their academics amid their sporting seasons.

Anna Potts

Student-athletes at AHS live a double life, between late nights from away game bus rides to practicing every day, balance is important. With hours of homework to complete on a daily basis, student-athletes are giving us a glimpse into their everyday lives. 

Many students at AHS are dual sport athletes, meaning they do two in-season sports at once. Senior Ava Rush, however, is currently a member of three in-season extracurriculars: cheerleading, cross-country, and volleyball. Rush’s off-season sports include softball, and track as well. “With having practices after school, it can be sometimes hard to like to make sure you get your homework done and get sleep,” said Rush. 

On top of practices on weekdays, it can be a challenge for homework not to overflow into the weekend. Sophomore Tyson O’Brien said, “I go to practice, then after practice, I stay up late and just grind all my stuff out to get it done before the weekend so I can relax and take a break from sports and academics.” High schoolers reported doing an average of 2.7 hours of homework per weeknight, according to a study by the Washington Post from 2018 to 2020 of over 50,000 individuals. That’s 13.5 hours every school week spent on homework.

Handling both athletics and academics is a constant uphill battle for student-athletes. Unfortunately, a student-athlete’s mental health is sometimes what is impacted most. “I think they [teachers] need to know that everyone is different. For me being a student-athlete doesn’t necessarily take a huge toll on me but, I know a lot of my teammates are different. I think teachers need to check in individually more, they don’t check in for anything other than grades and how you’re doing in school, they just look at your GPA and if it’s good then, you’re not struggling,” said senior Caden Andersen. It is not uncommon for students to be mentally exhausted after a long day of learning, but student-athletes are physically exhausted as well. Junior Claire Pellett said, ¨Sometimes I get home and just want to go straight to bed, it can be exhausting.”

“Time management is the biggest thing,” said Rush. Unlike normal students, student-athletes have to uphold a certain GPA to remain eligible for athletics. Using tools like a planner or “making lists to stay on top of things helps” said junior Brock Henderson. 

Being a student-athlete is difficult, and oftentimes it can be stressful. However, the love for the game and the reward of a good season is always worth the stress. Coaches, parents, and peers are also great support systems. For these students it is not just school, practice, homework, and repeat, it’s a passion and a calling.