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How local student athletes are taking care of their mental health

Posted at 12:31 PM, May 13, 2024
and last updated 2024-05-13 13:31:10-04

WACO, Texas (KXXV) — Being a student-athlete isn't easy. From practices to games and everything in between, It's a lot to handle. University high school is one of many examples of what a day is like for student-athletes.

"It was like, never, ever, you're not busy, like you always going to be busy. You're never not busy here, really.... almost every day is too much, but at a certain point where you just gotta kind of get used to it," football and power lifter for University, Micah Willis said.

"Your body is definitely tired but, mentally you can't get too tired because, you know, you still gotta stay locked in on football, but your body can take a toll on you," football, track & field's Armani Franklin said.

On top of meetings and games, they have to focus on the student part of student athlete and getting good grades is just as important for their athletic careers

"To play football, you got to keep your grades up. So that's just number one, just keeping grades up... If I don't make it in sports, I still wanna go to school for something else and get an education," Franklin said.

"Now that part is quite hard to me. I take AP English so, I have multiple essays and different stuff like that," Mariah Diaz said.

Diaz plays volleyball, basketball, track, and played in softball last year.

"You got to do a lot of work off school hours and life just work when you're at home and just get it done because you're gonna have to get it done if you want to play," Alyana Salazar said.

Salazar also plays multiple sports in volleyball, softball, and basketball.

On the other side while juggling many things can be draining, sports can also be an outlet for these students and help them grow.

"These student athletes many times have been playing sports since they were young children and their self esteem has developed throughout these years and their opinions about their identity and themselves has developed through that time," Licensed Psychologist Dr. Julia Becker said.

"I find that as my peace like when I'm playing, I feel like nothing else is wrong with me," Diaz said.

"Sports is like I can be myself. Nobody worried about me but me so I can just go out there and have fun," Willis said.

If you are a student-athlete going through the pressures of balancing school and sports life, be sure to check what resources your district and community offers.

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