Multi Sport Athletes

What makes multi-sport athletes really special is the balancing act they play each and every season. Chasing academic and athletic achievement is a difficult process, but one in which countless Paly students complete every year. Here we have a couple students describing their eventful life as a multi-sport athlete.

Being a multi-sport athlete produces problems for athletes everywhere such as balancing school work and constant competition. However, being a multi-sport athlete does have its perks. 

Playing multiple sports is very beneficial to help athletes avoid burnout; thinking, practicing, and playing the same sport your whole life might be great for some, but for others it can lead to boredom or lack of enthusiasm for the sport they used to love. Athletes who are well rounded in a variety of sports also limit their risk of overuse injuries as their bodies get to move in new, unique ways as their seasons and sports change. Minimizing injury ensures more playing time overall and is crucial for athlete mental health. Being a multisport athlete helps develop necessary life skills and  the multi-sport environment can build great habits of time management and coach-player communication.

Natalie Neumman, although only a freshman, has already been dominating the court, the pool, and the track. She played JV water polo in the fall, varsity basketball in the winter, and is currently finishing up her first season of track and field, where she has been pulled up to the varsity for championships. Basketball, in which she was one of only three freshmen who made the varsity team this, is her favorite sport out of her three. This is because she has been playing it the longest and enjoys it the most. On top of sports, Neumann takes several difficult classes that she has to balance with practices and training. She takes bio honors and advanced geometry which require her to plan out her homework and study time.

 “I’m a multisport athlete because I like being active, and I grew up playing sports so I just love being part of a team and learning new skills – being a multisport athlete has really helped me not only with making new friends but also in teaching me important leadership skills and the importance of communication and teamwork” Neumann said. 

Thea Enache has been a multisport athlete throughout her high school career, playing both basketball and volleyball at Paly. Although she started basketball first, she enjoys both basketball and volleyball equally. Aside from school sports, Enache plays club volleyball and works out alone –in the form of lifting, cross-training, and technique skills– during and after the seasons. Because the Paly volleyball championship season overlaps with the beginning of the basketball season, Enache has to balance both sports along with her homework load. Although this is incredibly challenging, it is also very rewarding. It has helped her grow and learn as a person and she will continue her athletic journey playing Division I volleyball at San Diego State University.

“During double season I spent around 35 hours total a week training  and this was extremely difficult but also extremely rewarding” Anache said. 

Brody Simison is one of the many multi-sport seniors here at Paly. Simison, a two way star on the football field can also be found dribbling up and down the court in the winter, and breaking PR’s in the 100 meter. Simison’s favorite sport used to be basketball, but as high school continued, and the amount of touchdowns he scored grew, football took over as his top-runner. The fall of his senior year, Brody scored over fifteen touchdowns and achieved eight interceptions. Simison will likely continue his academic and athletic career with football and attributes much of his success in sports and happiness in life to his athletic balancing act.

“I would say that playing multiple sports is a difficult job” Simison said. “However, you get great time management skills and become a very well rounded athlete which I think will give me an edge on my competition as I compete at higher levels.”

Jorell Clark is a multisport freshman who does cross country in the fall, basketball in the winter, and track in the spring. Basketball is his favorite sport out of the three and he can often be found using the hoop in his backyard, perfecting his shooting and dribbling. Clark spends around twenty hours every week training for track and basketball on top of the ten hours allocated to homework and studying. He balances his school work and athletics by being productive with his free time, early mornings, prep periods, and primes. Doing multiple sports bring not only excitement but also joy into his life and he couldn’t imagine anything but. 

 “I’m a multisport athlete because I enjoy the sports but also, each sport helps improve your performance for other sports. For example, cross country improves endurance which means I can stay on the court for longer than everyone else” Clark said.