McHenry High School's student-written and -edited newspaper

The McHenry Messenger

McHenry High School's student-written and -edited newspaper

The McHenry Messenger

McHenry High School's student-written and -edited newspaper

The McHenry Messenger

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A stressful balance

Student athletes struggle to find a balance between sports and school as grades drop and seasons come to an end
Beth Brackmann
Students struggle to find the balance between good grades and committing to their sports.

A student athlete goes to practice as they watch their grades drop asking their coach for a day off and the coach having the student prioritize their sport over their grades and school.

Student athletes take a big commitment joining a sport and commit to going to every practice and game/meet. Students are also asked a lot from their classes from school and some students struggle to find that balance to keep their grades up.

Senior varsity cross country and track runner Danny Thomas talks about how he struggles and balances his sport and school but how he also overcomes it.
“When it comes to stress, it all really depends on how much stuff is thrown at me school-wise and sport-wise,” says Thomas. “For example, at the end of the track season, we are starting to have many more meets right now, and it is stressing me out a bit because everything is coming to a close since I’m a Senior. I have to worry about finals and AP testing, which is kind of stressful for me right now.”

Thomas talks about what he feels the coaches can do to help this balance.

“I feel like sometimes I have to miss and coaches can be quite strict sometimes,” says Thomas. “They have to realize people can’t be 100% dedicated to the sport, people have other things like class commitments, family, and even club commitments. I know me personally, I have had to miss some track meets because of some school commitments this season. So, we really need people to understand that we can’t be there 24/7, we are people and have to have a balance in our lives with school and personal life.”

Athletic Director Chris Madson takes his view on what he feels students can do to help this balance.

“I think coaches, and myself the athletic director, it all comes down to time management,” says Madson. “We have 24 hours in the day, a lot of times, on average, our team’s practice two hours a night. So that’s roughly 2% of their day,Whatever it might be, or whatever it is, you know, I think maybe 20% of their day, whatever the hourly breakdown is so yes, if they’re in school, eight hours a day, they have an extra 10 hours or you know, two hours of practice. We’re talking 10 Out of the 14, they sleep eight, they have six hours left. So I think it’s not that there’s not enough time. I think that’s the mismanagement of time.

As the student athlete goes to practice with his grades dropping he knows that if starts his work once he gets home he can get everything done before he goes to sleep for the night and he is able to find that balance between sports and school.

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