Participating in sports at the college level offers great advantages and opportunities to students. However, there is always the risk of focusing on sports too much and neglecting one’s studies. In the real sense, there is usually a lot of balance in college in terms of social life, academic life, and sports for student-athletes. Of course, education needs to take a front seat in the plans, but sports becomes an incredible priority when the student aims to go pro.
So, students have to strategize and create a good balance between all the different aspects of their college life. This way, there will be a little less pressure from having to choose which college activity to prioritize. So, here are some tips for creating the right balance.
To pull this off, you need to be organized as a student. First, you have to create a calendar for both your school and sports. Here you should include:
- All the different due dates for assignments
- Exam periods
- Projects due
- Papers and assignments to complete
On the side of sports, you also need to have the training days and hours, team responsibilities, and the significant competitions coming up. The calendar needs to be updated frequently, depending on changes that occur. It will help you keep track of anything essential and, therefore, help avoid a last-minute rush.
Plan Each Week in Advance
Preparation is essential in every aspect of life; even a simple plan can go a long way in ensuring that a student achieves all their objectives for the week. Students need to plan their week the same way an essay writer has to outline their paper before writing. Planning for the week means avoiding unnecessary surprises. Go over your calendar frequently, and before each week starts, identify the best study times and even how you will use that study time. On the side of sports, you can work out different types of training regimens you will incorporate in your week and where they will be suitable.
It is quite easy to put off an assignment or even a training session for later just because you don’t feel like it. However, it can be quite damaging to your whole schedule. Procrastination is an enemy for any serious student. Students who procrastinate often find themselves competing with deadlines, which contributes to stress and anxiety. They are also less productive due to the rush involved. Any schedule you create will not be effective if you keep procrastinating. So, one needs to push themselves even when they feel distracted or lazy.
Make Use of Your Weekends
While there is an unspoken rule of spending weekends to rest, you can dedicate a few hours of your weekend to your studies and preparing for the coming week. Understand that rest and recuperation is essential. So, allocate some time to resting during weekends but try to work on some studies too. Read ahead whenever possible or when behind on notes, take some time off your weekend to catch up.
There is always a problem when a student overworks. Whether it is in training or with studying, you need to rest. You can work out a few rest intervals spread throughout the day. Take power naps when you feel you need them during the day.
Furthermore, ensure you are getting enough sleep at night. Get 7 to 8 hours of sleep daily when possible or at least 6 hours of sleep during demanding days. Sleeping rejuvenates your cells, and you are likely to be more active the next day after a good night’s sleep. Even after workouts and training, give your muscles a reasonable amount of time to rejuvenate through resting.
Make Proper Use of School Resources
Many schools have outstanding programs to support their athletes, for example, tutors. Make good use of these resources, and frequent the library for your studying needs if need be. Resources also include guidance counselors and taking advice from your professors. Counseling can help you manage the pressure of juggling school with sports.
Success in balancing sports and academics comes down to one’s discipline and determination. So, self-drive is crucial. As a student, you will also need to be prepared to weather the storms. There will always be times when it will all seem challenging, but staying true to your goals is what gets you through these times. The importance of balancing education and sports is that you never know what will help you make it in the future. Athlete careers often end unexpectedly, and they have to rely on their learning. So, prioritizing the two gives you something to fall back on.