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Redwood Bark

Twelve seniors were presented with awards to recognize their commitment to being outstanding high school athletes (Photo by Zoe Gister).
Redwood senior athletes recognized in new venue celebration
Charlotte LacyMay 30, 2024

On May 20, senior athletes, parents and coaches gathered at Sam’s Anchor Cafe in Tiburon to recognize and celebrate the seniors committed...

Smiling and holding their floats, seniors make the most of their lunch.
Seniors stay a-float for senior week
Hannah HerbstMay 29, 2024

On Tuesday, May 28, after a long Memorial Day Weekend and with only twelve more academic days left of school, leadership kicked off Senior...

Boys’ varsity baseball marks history with first-ever state playoff victory
Boys’ varsity baseball marks history with first-ever state playoff victory
Will ParsonsMay 29, 2024

On May 28, the Giants’ varsity baseball team took on the Carmel Padres in the first Norcal state playoff game in the program’s history. The...

Importance of Sleep Deprivation for Athletes

As teen athletes get older and their responsibilities increase, staying up late becomes a common occurrence. It can be difficult for athletes to get the right amount of sleep because of the many responsibilities they have. They are often extremely busy due to the amount of schoolwork they need to complete on top of their sport. Being able to set priorities in a daily routine allows athletes to have confidence in what they set their minds to.

As someone who understands the struggle of balancing athletics, academics and employment, I know that getting sleep isn’t always my top priority. An athlete’s lack of sleep can inhibit the body’s ability to recover from the level of physical activity the body endures. In a 2017 survey of 189 University of Arizona student-athletes, 68 percent of athletes reported poor sleep quality, with 87 percent getting less than or equal to eight hours of sleep a night, and 43 percent getting less than seven hours. Sleep deprivation can decrease stamina, impair muscular strength and speed and reduce mental and cognitive performance. It therefore affects the effort an athlete puts into their sport and their ability to perform skills that are needed in practice.

To test whether sleep deprivation affects student-athlete performance, Portland State University’s Sleep and Quality of Intercollegiate student-athletes created a study that compared student-athlete and non

Illustration by Adela Tabak

-student-athlete sleep. The survey measured sleep duration, sleep latency, disturbances during sleep, dysfunctions during the daytime and usage of sleep medications. The results showed that only three student-athletes had their sleep quality rated as good, leaving the overwhelming majority (93 percent) classified as having their sleep quality rated as bad. This overwhelming amount of poor sleep quality proves that sleep deprivation affects a large majority of student-athletes and is very common. 

However, some student-athletes argue that sleep deprivation does not impact performance on a large enough scale to make a real impact. Athletes can develop better time management skills, sometimes better than non-athletes because they have so much going on and have hectic schedules. Getting the correct amount of sleep will benefit an athlete in the long run. Good sleeping habits that aim to improve athletes’ sleep deprivation include going to bed at the same time every night, sleeping in a cool, dark, quiet environment, avoiding caffeine after 3 p.m. and finding the best nighttime routine. If these habits are installed in a student-athletes routine before bed, they not only find natural ways to calm down their brain but will also discover what works best when it comes to sleep.

While a good sleep schedule will help improve athletic performance, finding that balance can be difficult with the demands of school and the expectation to be focused, on time and persistent. To ensure these expectations are met, students should pay close attention to the classes that will benefit them most in the long run. In addition, these students should work on managing time off during weekends and dedicate time to study and prepare for the week ahead. To accommodate students who require more time, teachers should allow extensions for student-athletes, so they can get enough sleep and get their work done. These changes will benefit not only student-athletes with their performance in their sport but also their overall academic success and well-being. 

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About the Contributor
Adela Tabak
Adela Tabak is a sophomore and cub reporter for the Nonfiction class. In her free time, she enjoys playing soccer, hanging out with friends and family and going to the beach.