Stress, Stressors, and Solutions

HPPE 120 Class

Stress is part of life no matter how hard a person tries to avoid it.  Students at ASC are no exception to this rule.  When students in Betty Block’s HPPE 120 Concepts in Wellness looked into the issue of stress at ASC, they learned a lot about stress, stressors, and solutions.  What follows is a compilation of their work:

What exactly is stress? Stress is anxiety and pressure put on the body. Student-athletes and students with learning disabilities regularly suffer from stress, but during finals week, students tend to experience more than the normal amount of stress.

Adams state student Tracy Vigil says, “Finals are no fun, whatsoever, and they stress me out very bad.” To deal with finals week stress, Vigil says she just studies, studies, and studies. “In the end, finals week is not worth putting that much stress on yourself because you should just try and do your best and if you stay on top of things during the semester one single test at the end of the semester should not make the difference.”

But stress for students is not limited to the last few weeks of each semester.  Almost a third of ASC students are also athletes and, in addition to playing, practicing, and training for their sport, an average ASC athlete’s life usually consists of attending classes, long hours of studying, working a job, and having a social life.  According to Ryan McNiff, a three-time national championship track/cross country athlete, “I often find it hard to study when I am worrying about an important race that is coming up. I miss a lot of class when I’m away on trips but I can never study as I’m always busy thinking about racing. Worrying about schoolwork can be quite stressful, but to be honest, I worry way more about running badly than I do about failing a test.”

Sports are a huge part of life at ASC, and the college and athletic conference work hard to alleviate stress for student-athletes. The NCAA has a lot of rules and regulations to help protect the student-athlete in the classroom. But from individual to individual the daily workouts and classes can become overwhelming causing some students to lose their way completely. Coaches need to be dedicated to their players by making sure they succeed in all aspects of their college lives.  If that means cutting down on hours in practice or helping students find a tutor, it should be part of the coach’s job description.

Like student-athletes, ASC students who have learning disabilities also have a lot on their plates. A learning disability is a condition that either prevents or significantly hinders somebody from learning basic skills or information at the same rate as most people of the same age.

Researchers think that learning disabilities are caused by differences in how a person’s brain works.  Often people with learning disabilities are mistaken for being “dumb” or “lazy.” This, however, is not the case.  It is simply that a person with a learning disability processes information differently.  In many cases, students with learning disabilities have average or above-average intelligence.

“I struggle with most of my subjects in school because it’s hard for me to read and comprehend what I just read,” said one ASC student who preferred to remain anonymous. “I often mix my letters and numbers causing me to have great difficulty in math.  I struggle mostly with writing, my words are backwards and I have trouble completing a sentence.”

“I feel extremely stressed out all of the time.  I don’t ever have personal time.  Because of my disability I feel I have to work twice as hard; my school work takes extra effort and time, but if I don’t push myself I know I will fail.”  People with learning disabilities are protected by the American with Disabilities Act (ADA), which prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability in employment, state and local government, public accommodations, commercial facilities, transportation, and telecommunications.  But for an ASC student to receive accommodation for their learning disability it must be documented through a complex process of testing and gathering information in all areas related to a student’s suspected disabilities.

Stress is universal, and finals tend to be a particularly stressful time for students.  There are several ways stress can be overcome or limited during finals week. Avoid stressful people, eat healthy and exercise, do not party or use drugs, visualize yourself doing well on the final, force yourself to take breaks and study for an hour at a time, and be confident in yourself.

In the end, college students already have enough stress on them and adding to that stress with finals can put some students over the edge. Every student should keep in mind that there are ways to beat stress during finals week. is powered by WordPress µ | Spam prevention powered by Akismet