The Negative Impacts Of High School Sports

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The impact of preserving sports in high schools has been surrounded by much controversy as people suspect that it is the reason behind the poor academic achievement of students. Opponents to high school sports feel that allowing athletics to be a part of schools sidetracks the focus of the student body, which goes completely against the main purpose of schools. Indeed, this assertion is completely true and based upon plentiful evidence. High school sports undoubtedly come at the expense of student academic achievement since they divert the attention of students away from academics and they come with far too many financial costs, both of which incur negative impacts on the academics within a school. The bottomline is that sports are harming the education of students, so a school must make the decision between composing quality sports teams or providing high level academics; both of these choices simply cannot occur simultaneously.

A prominent reason why high school sports is detrimental to academic accomplishments of students is because of how sports act as a powerful distractor to education. When a student starts to play sports in school, their mindset shifts from being focused on learning to now focusing on improving at their sport of choice. Sports are just another thing that consumes the time and attention of people. This simple fact clearly presents a problem because it means less effort can be dedicated towards academics. A perfect example of how sports teams magnify this effect of reducing academic effort is presented in the article “Why Student Athletes Continue to Fail” when it explains “Tight-knit student athletes will seek ways of fitting into a culture that they perceive as neglecting academics (by defaulting into majors of dubious merit and spending less time doing homework), knowing that their habits are observed by teammates” (Oppenheimer). Clearly, this statement demonstrates that school sports create an environment where students feel pressured to adopt a callous attitude towards academics. Since sports teams form a strong bond between the members of the team, the impact of peer pressure is emphasized because each student wants to behave like the others simply to feel connected to the group.
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