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Staley News

The news site of Staley High School

Staley News

The news site of Staley High School

Staley News

Dual Sport Athletes Balance Commitments

Coach Says Biggest Struggle Is Time Commitment
Track and Field Conference was held at Lee’s Summit North High School May 1.

Dual sport athletes and coaches are in full swing for the spring season. Balancing commitments each day, freshmen Alyssa Franklin, Orryn Wright and senior Shane Smith shared their experiences being dual sport athletes.

Girls basketball and head track coach David Fowler said the biggest struggle for dual sport athletes is the time commitment for both sports.

“I know I’ve tried to be as flexible as possible, but the downside of that is sometimes the club coaches aren’t as flexible as me,” Fowler said. “I know they have a lot on their plate, but they find success in many different areas, so that’s probably why they’re in multiple things.”

About 91% of high school athletes experience stress from participating in sports, according to a 2023 study from the National Institutes of Health. The study also cited the primary challenges facing student athletes as time management, physical and mental fatigue and academic pressure.

For students involved in multiple sports, the stress can compound. Club lacrosse and school track runner freshman Alyssa Franklin said that even though she enjoys both sports she chooses lacrosse because in the end it is more important to her.

“It’s hard having the time commitment between both the sports which can make it hard to choose, especially when they overlap, but I have been doing lacrosse longer than I have been doing track,” Franklin said.

Comp AAU and school track runner Orryn Wright is in her first year of high school track and is running in events like the 100m, 200m, 400m, and 4×1. And during their conference meet her and the rest the the 4×1 girls team beat the school record. She said the environments are different between the two even though they are the same sport.

“During a certain part of the season there’s an overlapping period where they’re both going on at the same time at one time, so I have to go to both practices,” Wright said. “So it can be harder and takes a better mindset.”

Another competitive AAU and school track runner Shane Smith is in his first year at our high school. Shane says he would choose school track over AAU because it’s more important to him and that it’s also different training for school and AAU.

“The workouts are more intense, and we train at a more colligate level than just the high school workouts we do here,” Smith said. “I do think school is stricter over AAU though.”

The track team is heading into the final stretch of the season with districts this Friday at Liberty and State in a few weeks. Overall, dual sport athletes have much to focus on. Even If it can be a lot to handle, they are still able to do the sports they love even if they overlap. But they know the goals they have in mind and the commitments they need to balance.


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