School vs. Sports | Teen Ink

School vs. Sports

May 21, 2013
By Paloma09 BRONZE, Woodland Park, Colorado
Paloma09 BRONZE, Woodland Park, Colorado
1 article 0 photos 0 comments

School vs. Sport

Some high school teens think that they have to pick between good grades during class or doing what they enjoy in the gym after school. In reality sports are shown to raise teen’s morale, grades and skills in the class room. Many kids play some kind of sport throughout their high school career, some say it’s a constructive way to get kids moving and learn how to work as a team. Others say it is a strain to their studies and kids are too stressed while playing a sport while juggling other commitments. Teens today need a constructive way to relax from day to day school work and learn the art of teamwork to bring into their everyday lives.

After being surveyed, students were asked what their morale was while playing one or more sporting during the school year. Seventy- five percent of students said that they felt better while playing a sport because it, “Relieves stress, and anger and makes me happy.” When kids are in a better mood they are more motivated to do their homework and study for their classes. Seventy- five percent of those surveyed said that their grades either went up or stayed the same while playing a sport, one hundred percent of those teens said nothing about being “over worked”, but that they also have a higher morale while playing a sport because, “I feel better when I’m in a sport because I feel accomplished.” The sense of team and accomplishment is a common feeling throughout teens in high school athletics. That feeling is essential to preparing for their future careers. Athletics not only help to strengthen mental health but also physical wellbeing, of course we know that it is right to be healthy; however, if someone is healthier they tend to care more about academics and there is more motivation to do well so they can stay in shape. Twenty people where asked, “Do you feel better or worse when you are involved? Explain why.” Students surveyed said, “Better, I feel more fit and active.” One athlete in particular also plays two sports during the school year and said that his or her grades go up during their sports season, the perfect reason why athletics can be beneficial to academic performance.
All sports have criteria an athlete must meet before competing in a game. The criteria make sure all students are eligible to play their sport and it teaches them to keep their studies balanced with their school work. Student-athletes are exactly what their name states: students first and athletes second. This means they are forced to prioritize their responsibilities so they keep their grades up. Most students’ grades stay the same with sixty-five percent of students saying that their grades stay the same or even go up while playing a sport. According to NCAA graduation numbers eighty percent of students playing college sports graduate with diplomas on time. This is higher than the national average of seventy four percent for all college graduates. So the conclusion can be made that it is better for students to play sports because their participation is directly related to graduation rates. Now students are not only going to school because they have to, but because they have someone there for them such as their team or coach. In fact most teams have a rule that student athletes must be in class for a certain amount of time if they want to play in their game or practice that day.
The most popular reason athletics helps education is because the idea that team work can be taken out side of the gym. Jack Welch, former Chief Executive Officer of General Electric said, “Before you are a leader, success is all about growing yourself. When you become a leader, success is all about growing others.” This means that you first need to learn to lead yourself before leading others because a leader needs to start with values for them self. In the classroom environment presentations and group projects need someone who can to take charge. This usually means one person ends up doing all the work. Even if this is not the case then someone is needed to split up the assignment instead of carry all the work. Athletes naturally step into leadership roles and they can delegate responsibility to others on the court, field, and classroom. Athletics brings out a leader in every team and teaches everyone to work towards a common goal. Leaders are also needed outside of the gym because without them there would be no decision making and nothing would get done. Do not forget that most leaders were not born leaders but shaped to be what we see in great business and countries today by their coaches and mentors.
Teens are known for getting into trouble, the classic list is: drugs, alcohol, sex, and falling in with the wrong crowd. Athletes on the other hand do not have the time to do these things because they are too busy keeping their grades up to play their sport. Students who are involved in sports take better care of their bodies because they cannot smoke then go to practice or have the opportunity to get caught and thrown off their team. Athletes are also less likely to give into peer pressure because they have been taught what is morally right and they have their team to turn to when times are rough with non-athletes. This all relates to education because kids who do drugs, drink, and smoke are less likely to graduate from high school because instead of being involved with their school and doing their homework they are too wrapped up in drugs and alcohol for their studies. Earl Campbell a former running back and Heisman Trophy winner, captured this idea perfectly when he said, “…I try to get them to remember that they are not just athletes, but student athletes. You need to get an education, keep your hands clean and represent your university.”
Research, NCAA graduates, and millions of student-athletes grades do not lie, their statists and studies defiantly show that athletics are a direct benefit to education and graduation rates across the United States. Not only can athletics keep teens healthy but sports and activities can also help their education. NCAA athletes have a higher graduation rate than the general public showing the effect of athletics on education. Next time you hear of a “sixteen sport senior”, do not be so surprised when their grades are higher than the average student because they have a drive to succeed that they have been learning and developing sense they started playing sports.

Works Cited
Associated Press. "NCAA: Student-athletes Graduate at a Higher Rate." ESPN College Sports. ESPN, 20 Nov. 2009. Web. 2 May 2013.

Kruse, Kevin, comp. "100 Best Quotes on Leadership." Editorial. Forbes. Forbes, 16 Oct. 2012. Web. 20 May 2013. <>.

Jennings, Troy. "42 Fun & Interesting Statistics for College Students." College Advisor RSS. N.p., n.d. Web. 21 May 2013. <>.

Juarros, Paloma. Sport vs. School. Survey. N.p.: n.p., 2013. Web. 6 May 2013

Similar Articles


This article has 1 comment.

on Jun. 7 2013 at 4:10 pm
inspiredpassion08 GOLD, Vienna, Virginia
15 articles 0 photos 11 comments

Favorite Quote:
"You change your life by changing your heart." -Max Luxado

Awesome articles on sports and school.. I'm compelled to join more sports at school too now.

Smith Summer

Parkland Speaks

Campus Compare