The Struggles of Extracurricular Activities in High School


Shen Subawalla (9)

The Village School Junior Varsity soccer team gather on the field before a game against St. Thomas High School.

Sports and extracurriculars are considered two of the top priorities of The Village School students after academics. Many often find balancing everything stressful, and it ends up affecting their performance. These students and some of the coaches, however, have found specific ways to manage their time in a manner that accommodates everything. 

Not only do students have to find ways to manage their time, the coaches, who are also teachers at the school, have to juggle teaching classes and attending practices and games. However, both students and teachers have found ways to effectively manage their time, completing all of their work done while also having time to do things they love. 

“[Sports] allows them to learn time management skills that a lot of other people don’t [have] because they have too much free time,” said Jason Cantwell, coach of the Varsity Girls’ Basketball team and a history teacher. “By filling up their schedule I think that it allows them to develop their time management skills that also allows them to make more productive decisions with their free time.”

Time management is a valuable skill that many student-athletes with various extracurriculars use and many of them have learned to use any time that they have, whether that be in class, before games and concerts, and even in the mornings before school. 

“Well, with school, there isn’t a lot of time because of the substantial amount of homework and studying to do,” said sophomore Tommy Wan. “So, you can’t really be that ambitious and go for like, let’s say six extracurriculars, and you can’t do all of them well so you have to really focus on one or two.”

Academics themselves are challenging, but on top of that, having to manage both that and extracurriculars can be stressful. This could affect the student’s performance in school and their grades. If a student’s grades drop past a certain point, they will be on academic probation until they can bring them up again. However, although many sports and extracurriculars can help students develop critical skills, they can cause unnecessary stress and prevent students from reaching their full potential in other activities they might participate in.

However, many studies have proven that sports do indeed benefit a student in the classroom and out. It allows students to be more goal-oriented and complete things that they put their minds to. Also, with sports come many challenges but doing extracurriculars often help students greatly later in life when they need to manage between their family, their job, and other things they will deal with. Athletics is a tool that can teach life lessons that you would find difficult to learn while in class and learning from a book.

“There have actually been studies that have shown that participating in athletics or extracurriculars, or any kind of physical activity, actually increases performance in the classroom,” said Doug Brotherton, coach of the Varsity Girls’ Basketball team. “Everything I’ve heard says that being involved in more extracurriculars is beneficial to college acceptance. I know that the one thing that athletics offers students is an opportunity to receive scholarships.”


No matter the hardships with time management, sports and extracurriculars are extremely advantageous when applying to colleges, making students eligible for scholarships. Some of the school’s current athletes have been offered some. 


However, despite college application beneficiaries, another major thing that comes with sports is injuries. Many contact sports may come with the possibility of injuries. Whether it be a concussion or a torn ACL(Anterior cruciate ligament), an injury can severely affect a student in their daily lives, especially academics. A concussion could make it harder to concentrate and any other injury could make it hard to get around the campus. Concussions represent about 8.9% of all high school sports injuries. Also, some injuries could have long term effects on an athlete’s life. It might also take them out of sports until either they get better or for good.


Sports and extracurriculars play major roles in a student’s life. Many students have to manage long practice hours, clubs, and compulsory classwork. Despite the many sacrifices and risks, they most definitely improve a student’s high school experience and teach them lifelong lessons. It also builds lasting friendships with their team members through practices and games. The strong bonds between the players allow them to be their best on the field and off.