Being a student-athlete


Isabella Zhong on the tennis court during morning practice.

Being a student-athlete can be tough. Student-athletes are juggling practice, game schedules, and class schedules while squeezing in time to eat, sleep, do homework, and hang out with friends. Student-athletes from the South Hills girl’s tennis team share their thoughts on balancing school and sports.

When we think of student-athletes we think of responsibility, drive, and dedication. Students involved in a sport not only have to worry about performing well on the court, but they also have to find time for homework, studying, social life, and getting enough sleep to do it all over again the next day.

Junior Eliza Garcia is a first-year tennis player and shares their take on what it’s like to balance school and sports.

“It is very stressful when the grading period comes and your report card is sent out and you probably just didn’t have enough time to do all the work so definitely having a balanced time management schedule is something to improve on, ” Garcia said.

With student-athletes spending most of their days practicing or studying they may not be getting the proper amount of sleep. According to the CDC, 7 out of 10 teenagers do not get enough sleep. The recommended sleep time for teenagers is 8 to 10 hours. 

“There are games after school, which makes it a little bit difficult because they usually end kind of late so I don’t have that much time to do my homework, or I get less sleep,” Bella Mendez (9) said. 

The CDC also stated that a 24-hour day gives students roughly 5 hours of their own time (not including clubs, volunteer work, or part-time jobs). When asked for advice from sophomore Isabella Zhong, she talks about having to find time to be in Key Club and WESA.

“Put your mental health first, it’s not worth it if you feel burnt out,” Zhong said.

Mendez adds that tennis and being a part of a team can be fun and rewarding.

“It’s really fun. And even if you don’t win you feel accomplished for trying your best,” Mendez said.