Combining sport with academics is not an easy task. Both of those spheres require dedication, time, and effort. Athlete students need to train, travel, develop their skills and meet all the college deadlines.
However, if you are gifted with a talent in sport, it is still possible to be successful in both worlds. Here are the best tips on how to juggle all responsibilities and stay on track.
Utilize Available Resources
Fortunately, there are lots of different resources, tools, and solutions that can make any student’s life better. These include scheduling apps, calendars, and productivity software. It also covers various databases and platforms that help to study better.
Acknowledge that you need to benefit from every resource you have access to. Download relevant apps and bookmark helpful websites. For example, if academic writing is your pain point, focus on that. Search for platforms that will be useful with advice, tips, or examples of papers. For example, if you catch yourself thinking, “I should write my paper with WritePaper writers this time because I do not feel confident in my skill,” be ready to ask for help.
There is nothing wrong with needing assistance. And in this case, you’ll get help from academic writing experts that can tackle any type of college paper. Whether you worry about writing, proofreading, or editing, they’ve got your back.
Make sure that you always have access to the resources you need.
Create a Schedule
At the beginning of the year, create a calendar with all the important tasks. Put college deadlines and sports events (games, training, or competitions) there. It is better to color-code them differently so you can easily evaluate what is a priority for a day.
When you get new assignments, put them in the schedule and set a reminder to start early. Avoid procrastination by creating to-do lists and separating huge projects into small manageable tasks.
When working on your yearly, monthly, and weekly schedule, do not forget about other important things. Also, include there:
- Time to rest;
- Family holidays;
- Friends’ birthdays;
- Events you want to visit.
These aspects of life are essential as well. Yes, you’ll have to make compromises sometimes, but working 24/7 will only lead to burnout.
Work on a System
Another major contributor to productivity is organization. When everything is organized you do not spend time searching for things or files. It also clears mental space, which is crucial to staying focused.
Here is what you can do:
- Organize all your files and books;
- Color code folders for easy access;
- Organize digital files as well;
- Create a workspace without distractions;
- Keep a planner for daily tasks.
Use Time Wisely
Always plan ahead to stay on the top of the game. For example, if you have to read a long book by the end of the month, do not let it sit there till the last day. Utilize the time you do not usually benefit from. Read a book while traveling to games or competitions or while waiting in a line.
Keep yourself busy with academics by revising with flashcard apps. Another useful idea is to listen to audiobooks or audio lectures while you do cardio or drive to the practice. Or you can even organize a collective study session to drill in all the terms and dates.
Learn to Prioritize
Prioritization is a crucial skill. Remember that there is only so much you can do in one day. That’s why you need to put your mind and effort into what is truly important.
The simple system is to separate tasks among the following categories:
- Important and urgent;
- Important but not urgent;
- Urgent but not important;
- Neither urgent nor important.
Based on that, you can plan your day. For example, doing chores is important but might not be urgent right now. You can plan to do it later, on the weekends.
Sometimes it is hard to find the motivation to study. It is a normal feeling everyone can get. However, it is crucial to stay motivated to get results.
To do so, write down your short-term and long-term goals. There is a big one for the year and smaller ones for a week or a month. And there can be a huge goal – get a degree and achieve new heights in your sport.
With every goal, think of what you are working for. You need a degree to work in the job of your dreams. Or you want to increase your career opportunities. You might be dreaming of becoming a professional athlete, but having more options is always a good choice.
Sports careers might be unpredictable, so it is essential to have a safety plan (degree). In case you change your mind or would not get into the league you aim for, you’ll always have plan B.
On the contrary, if you put more focus into a degree, think about why sport is equally important. It might allow you to receive a scholarship that will make education available. Or maybe it can keep you in a good mental and physical state. Or maybe, you just love it.
Understanding why you are doing this will help gain a strong inner motivation.
Consider Hiring a Tutor
If you feel that you are falling behind on the curriculum, consider hiring a tutor. The more you slow down, the harder it will be to catch up. So be sure to not let yourself slip.
There are plenty of tutoring services online. Or you can ask some of your peers that excel in this particular subject to help you out. If possible, join a study group to keep yourself in check.
Exercising on the weekends doesn’t mean you should forgo rest. Everyone needs time to relax, unwind, catch up with friends, or have a good evening with a family.
But you can also fit in some of the tasks during these days. For example:
- Create a to-do list and plan for a week;
- Prepare some assignments or do some preliminary work (research);
- Read a chapter or two ahead;
- Train for the test;
- Revise notes and vital concepts.
If you manage to be ahead of the curriculum, your weekdays will be less loaded. And you’ll get to focus on sport. This is particularly important when you know that the following week you’ll have to pay more attention to athletics.
Communicate with Professors
Make sure to establish good relationships with your educators. If you are going to miss a class or lecture because of the game, let them know beforehand. Consult your college advisor on the workload and how to maximize your productivity.
When possible, turn in assignments earlier if you won’t be present on a due date. Be initiative and open to conversations. Professors will be ready to compromise in the vast majority of cases. Especially if you approach them before the fact rather than after.
Although it is challenging to juggle academics with sport, it is possible. One will need to stay organized and manage time wisely. But with helping tools and resources, you can stay on track and keep up with all deadlines.
Stay motivated, avoid procrastination, and remember what you are working for.