Athletes make plans to balance school, training

Most high school athletes participate in at least one sport, but still have to balance their athletic commitments with academics. With sports practices anywhere from one-three hours long, by the time athletes eat dinner, it makes it hard to get stuff done. Some have found tricks for staying on top of classes, including keeping track of homework by writing down your assignments, setting deadlines in online calendars and saving some time at the end of the night or scheduling a study hall.

Though sports are an extra commitment, Cedar Falls Tiger athletes have an average GPA of 3.3. 

Crystal Lopez runs a blog called where she writes about balancing the needs of a family with eight boys and one girl. In a post called How does playing a sport affect grades, she writes, One research study found that the more time a student spent playing a sport, the better they understood the classroom and homework material. Vigorous exercise improves blood flow to the brain, thereby improving alertness and intellectual functions, such as thinking and learning, decision-making and processing information. Compared to sedentary students, physically active students are 20 percent more likely to earn top marks in math, science and English. Moreover, high school student athletes are more likely to attend college and earn a degree than their counterparts.”

Junior athlete Anna Becker said, “Being an athlete and also being a student is sometimes difficult to manage. You have to stick to a plan and have a schedule that you can follow to make sure you get your work done on time. 

“It can be hard sometimes, and it takes a lot of support and hard work to balance both sports and academics, but it is possible. Taking a study hall has helped me a lot to be able to get my work done in case I don’t have time while at home.”

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