Being a student athlete was one of the greatest experiences of my life.
For many incoming college freshman, the transition can be a tough one. However, being a student athlete offered immediate relationships with future teammates, as well as an immediate sense of responsibility to do things the right way.
Being a successful student athlete requires that you understand how to manage your time. Not only do you need to find time to practice with your team, but you must also find the time to study and maintain your grades.
Fortunately, there are resources in place to help student athletes along the way.
As a college golf coach, I have learned to recognize the student athletes’ responsibilities through a different set of eyes. While I was the student athlete, I was provided a schedule that I was expected to adhere to. Now that I am the coach, it is my responsibility to set a schedule to help my players be successful both on and off the golf course.
Months before our school year even begins, I meet with our academic advisement team to go over my proposed golf schedule for the upcoming semester. This schedule includes workouts with our trainer, practice at the course and tournaments.
Once this meeting takes place, each of my players then meets with their academic adviser to put together their class schedule for the semester. Knowing my proposed schedule, the adviser can assist my players in scheduling their necessary classes accordingly.
It takes teamwork to make this happen.
This past semester, my team had the following weekly schedule. Each Monday, Wednesday and Friday, we had practice from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. This left those afternoons and evenings free for class. Each Tuesday and Thursday we had 6 a.m. workouts.
These workouts lasted one hour and left the entire rest of the day open to whatever schedule they needed.
But, it doesn’t stop there.
Our student athletes have a required number of study hall hours to fulfill each week. As a coach, I can monitor these hours to make sure that my players are staying on task.
Different schools and programs will each have their own way of operating. Regardless, every student athlete will have to find that balance between school and sport. It takes a special person to handle this type of responsibility. However, those that can handle the work load are rewarded with the most amazing memories and experiences a college student could ever wish for.