A Balancing Act

Noah Tiede (11) sees a breakaway opportunity and sprints down the field.

Being a student athlete is a big time commitment and extremely draining on the body and mind. Add in maintaining good grades, you’ll find yourself on a tightrope of responsibility. So how are our Stoughton High School student-athletes finding the right balance? Aubrey Hutchins, a junior at SHS, has been involved in the athletic program every season for the past three years.
“I’ve swam and played basketball for all three years and managed softball for the last two,” Hutchins says.
Similar to many student athletes, her schedule is packed full.
“We practice almost every day. Games for basketball are every Tuesday and Thursday. And the same with swimming. We also have morning practices for swim,” Hutchins says.
Despite her busy schedule, she has managed to maintain a high GPA while taking several AP classes. This raises a crucial question. What tips and tricks should students know to balance their schedules?
Noah Tiede, a junior, has several suggestions for staying on top of your loads of schoolwork.
“Use a study hall or 2+. I try to get my homework done right away in 2+, so I have more motivation and don’t put it off for later,” Tiede says.
Tiede is involved in boys soccer during the fall season, and he also is a Norwegian Dancer. Both Hutchins and Tiede are also involved in extracurricular clubs, such as Key Club and Link Crew. Most student athletes agree that finding time is the most challenging aspect of being an involved student.
“You have to manage your time better. When you aren’t in a sport, you have a lot more time, […] but when you’re in a sport, you only have certain spaces and windows to get your work done,” Tiede says.
Avoiding late homework and studying for upcoming tests are essential to keeping your grades up. Hutchins suggests a study plan.
“It depends on the class, but if you have a big test, start studying a week out. If it’s a smaller test or a quiz, studying two or three days before the test will help. I try to plan my study times around my games so I’m not cramming the night before,” Hutchins says.
Many students push their schoolwork off, which undeniably creates more stress in the long run. Tiede believes finding an alternative to morning practice is helpful for many SHS athletes.
“Lift sessions are required twice a week,” Tiede says. “If you take a strength class, you don’t have to do those lift sessions. It gives you more time.”
Adding a strength class into your schedule gives you more time to focus on your school based responsibilities while also improving your athletic performance.
In the words of these multi-sport athletes, while being a student-athlete is tiring, it is undoubtedly rewarding. But slacking on your schoolwork may keep you on the bench. Finding a balance between school and sports will keep your grades up, stress down, and you off the bench and in the game.