Being a college student-athlete is no easy feat. While many college students are sound asleep or deep into cramming their requirements, these athletes haul themselves out of bed and prepare to go to training.
Student-athletes are expected to excel in both academics and sports. Yet, how can they manage to balance these when both demand much of their time? Here are five suggestions:
Student-athletes have to keep in mind that they are students first before athletes. Yes, college is an arena for them to improve on their athletic skills but it is also the best place for them to expand their knowledge in preparation for their future.
One of the best things they can do first and foremost is to go to class. Athletes will tend to go class exhausted, but their attendance is necessary. Students are barred from representing the school and joining tournaments if they have slipping grades. Remember that if you are not doing well academically, you could lose your eligibility and your spot on the team.
Sometimes, they’ll find themselves sacrificing a bit of study time for training and other times and they’ll have to sacrifice training to study. They should know their priorities as different sorts of requirements and competitions pop up.
One of the biggest challenge that some athletes usually face and they have to learn is how to handle is time management. Student-athletes should create schedules for themselves wherein they can study, sleep, or eat during breaks. As intercollegiate athletes often have their competition schedules planned out, they should advance study or set up consultations with their professors.
Professors and coaches always look out for the student-athletes’ well-being. Always remember to respect them and never be afraid to address your concerns to them.
In case of scheduling conflicts with school requirements and games, make sure to inform your superiors ahead of time. Professors are usually more than willing to accommodate athletes who have reasonable excuses. However, make sure not to abuse their kindness.
The respect student-athletes show their superiors should be the same amount of respect they show their classmates. Usually, if games require one to miss class, classmates are there to help athletes catch up. Student-athletes should make sure to update their group mates from time to time, especially when there are group works due. Remember that everyone is expected to help in some way no matter busy one may be.
Make sure to get a good amount of sleep and don’t miss meals. Athletes can’t reach their peak performance if they’re not in their optimum level of health.
Student-athletes should also enjoy time off both training and studies. These breaks are good for alone time or for spending time with friends.
Fostering a good relationship with teammates is also healthy for student-athletes as they share their days with them daily. They’re the ones who’ll be able to support you best as they struggle along with you. Shared experiences with them make them one of the best support systems.
Setting goals make it easier to persevere towards a certain end. One struggles as he strives for something and this is often good motivation. Keeping up both academics and sports is difficult but it is achievable with enough determination.
The path ahead will be rocky with additional responsibilities and expectations, but as one grows throughout their college life, the experience will be worthwhile. Living as a student-athlete is a constant balancing act. Grades must come first, sports should come second. If you want to stand out, then take a time out.