Sports are becoming more and more intense


Ike Swanson

The TBK Sports Complex after a weekend youth tournament.

Ike Swanson, Business Manager

Created as entertainment and exercise for people of all ages, sports have been around for thousands of years. But as our world becomes more and more competitive, sports are changing to adapt to the combative environment. 

In order to keep up with the competitive society, high school sports have been growing in intensity over the years. For many high school athletes, their education has taken the back seat with their sport taking main priority. 

“During big meet days in particular I spend most of my days thinking about the race and strategies,” said senior varsity cross country and track athlete Jacob Mumey. “It becomes hard to focus during the school day.” 

For some students, sports are becoming too much to handle on top of their school workload. Students understand the importance their grades have on their future college and career paths, and with sports becoming more intense, schoolwork can get in the way of their athletic goals.

Senior Asvantth Paranidharan, former track athlete, spoke about his struggles to work school and sports into the same routine. “In order to have more time to study and improve grades, I took the decision to not run track,” Paranidharan shared. 

This stress is also experienced by athletes who are still in their sports. “I have also noticed that my grades tend to do better when I am out of season,” Mumey added. 

This surge in intensity isn’t just limited to high school sports. Youth sports are also taking a huge step forward. In 2018, Bettendorf saw the emergence of its own sports complex. It was a $50 million project that stretched across 76 acres. 

On Feb. 16, 2021, it was announced that the TBK Bank Sports Complex would be getting another $75 million for a new addition. This is no surprise, as the current complex can be seen packed every weekend, hosting all types of sporting events for kids of all ages. 

The drive to improve and be better at the sport is what funds these sports complexes. Many kids are beginning to start their sports earlier because of how competitive high school sports are becoming. All sports nowadays have a limited number of athletes who can compete at the varsity level, so only the best get to participate. 

This pressure to succeed is resulting in an increase in sports intensity at all different levels. High school athletes have been working hard at their sport for years and youth athletes are working to prepare for the competitiveness of high school athletics.