The “Balanced” Life of a Student Athlete


Kailen Mant, Writer

Student athletes are all around Chatfield Senior High, but the problems they face are often overlooked. 8+ hours of sleep, 7 hours of school, 2 hours of practice, 2 hours of homework, family time, and time to relax are all things that a student athlete needs to balance. But how often are they successful? Let’s see what Chatfield athletes have to say…


Ella Wood

Ella is a freshman here at Chatfield and she runs cross country with her older sister Ava and plenty of other friends. As a freshman, adjusting to a new school and new expectations is difficult enough. Ella explained that, “Yes, I do struggle with balancing school and athletics. I have 7 classes a day which all require homework, but right after school I go straight to varsity practice. Not only am I physically exhausted but I am mentally exhausted as well.” When I asked her about how she manages her 4.1 GPA, she said, “I spend a lot of time working in access and late at night. My homework is my priority most of the time so I do what it takes to get it done even if that means staying up past midnight to get it done.”. She expressed that adjusting to high school alongside being a student athlete has been a challenge for her, but it’s something she hopes will benefit her when its all said and done.


Jake Harkness

As a junior, Jake has had his fair share of troubles and successes while trying to juggle sports and academics. He has played lacrosse here at Chatfield for 3 years while also playing club lacrosse during summer. “Club is a different level of competition compared to high school, however high school has other aspects to it that almost make it a little more stressful.”. He revealed that it does get easier the longer you play sports in high school, especially at Chatfield. His teachers have shown their flexibility when it comes to athletic activities after school by pushing due dates, yet still holding him accountable when they know he can make time. Jake knows that it has “…kept me honest and in check. Academics have always come first for me, and I know my teachers aren’t afraid to hold me to that when the time comes.”. The longer he has played at Chatfield, the more he has adjusted to balancing his homework, practice, and personal aspects of his life. Still, he is learning every day how to develop his dexterity in the academic and athletic worlds.


Makenna Mant

After graduating from Chatfield, Makenna Mant went to college to play division 2 lacrosse at Embry Riddle Aeronautical Engineering in Florida. When asked what she wished she could have done differently in high school to help balance athletics and academics, she said, “I wish I would have made more time for homework and personal time. I spent a lot of time just going out on weekends or wearing out my social battery when I should have been resting and working on things that are meaningful to me. After a stressful week of spending countless hours on homework, projects, family time, and practices, a day of rest would have definitely helped me recharge.”. She recommends that student athletes put their personal priorities first. Rest and relaxation can sometimes be just as beneficial as going to the gym.

What Does Science Have to Say?

Azusa Pacific University has plenty of the resources that student athletes would benefit from. They discuss how athletes need to prioritize what’s important by “…maintaining a healthy a healthy, balanced lifestyle. Planning ahead is key.”

Things You Can Do:

  1. Study Wisely – Prioritize classes that require more attention, plan ahead for what hours of the day you will spend on each class
  2. Ask For Help! – Your teachers are here to help, communicate with them and make a schedule with them if needed.
  3. Do What Motivates You – Do you also like music? Family time? Alone time? All of those and more are key ingredients to keeping a healthy balanced life.
  4. Prioritize YOU! – At the end of the day, do what makes you happiest. Success in life isn’t material, its about the experiences you have throughout the course of your life.