View Full Version : How do you find time for sports and robots?

01-28-2005, 04:09 PM
I was just wondering how other people find time to go to both sports practices and robotics meetings. Last year I was able to attend almost every robotics meeting and this year due to track i can barely make 2 or 3 a week. I usually rush home from practice so i can do some homework in the hour before I have to head off to robotics. (this is why I am wearing spandex in American Robot episode 2). I was just wondering how other people deal with this issue

01-28-2005, 04:11 PM
Well, I don't think this will help you a whole lot, but I just don't do sports....

Lisa Perez
01-28-2005, 04:17 PM
Two years ago, tennis practice lined up just perfectly with robotics so that I didn't have to miss anything. Track, however, was a different case, so I ended up just being statistician that season.

One year ago, tennis was at the same time as robotics, so I compromised with the tennis coach to just be a fill-in for doubles since we had an uneven number of people anyway.. Compromise = good stuff

This year, football practice was an hour after robotics, so that posed no problems whatsoever.

Pretty much, it's just been deciding what my #1 priority was/is.. And that's robotics :)

01-28-2005, 04:22 PM
you have two options, 1 find the site that Napoleon dynamite's uncle got his time machine from.

2. Run really fast at track practice so you can get done earlier and get to your meetings.

Now being serious, It is very hard to find the balance between other activities and FIRST. Many people who have jobs or play sports find ways to get to work before or after meetings. Sports is a whole different thing for people that have done it on MOE, most of the kids either work it out with there sub team leaders to come a little late or even have to switch days on and off between work/sports and robotics. With the homework issue, the way I deal with it is by just trying to do it before or after school or even at the meetings if needed.

01-28-2005, 04:59 PM
this year i am managing to participate in first team, chess club, cross-country, nhs, and science olympiad.

cross-country is a fall sport :D
chess club meeting isnt even mandatory, just show up occasionaly for a few matches.
nhs meetings are in morning and havent had any conflicting dates, i tutor kids at first sometimes since we do tutoring :P

only problem has become science olympiad and i found out that the competition day is the same as our first regional and so i am choosing not to attend the science olympiad competition. so i guess im not in that anymore...

01-28-2005, 05:06 PM
I recall a while back, during the robotics off-season, I participated on the Varsity Tennis Team. It is impossible to participate in a sport during the robotics season, not only is it a strain on your grades, studies, but also a harsh treatment on your body.

01-28-2005, 05:07 PM
the problem is that I am a varsity indoor track runner and i score in some of the meets, plus if I miss too many practices for Robotics then I will get kicked off of the team. My coach has some anger management problems.

01-28-2005, 05:09 PM
im an aspiring football and lacrosse player as well as a wrestler. i take all honors classes, no free period, and im also a musician as well. what do i do? i leave school at 3, go to wrestling, after that pick up food, go to robotics from 630-9, then i come home and shower, and i start hw at 10. and then i wake up 630 the following day and do it all over. :ahh:

01-28-2005, 05:25 PM
you know there really is no good way to cope with sports and robotics. i try to do what i can and go with the flow of the day.

Pi Is Exactly 3
01-28-2005, 05:32 PM
Well for me personally, tennis doesn't start up until mid-March. So that won't be a problem for the most part. Right now, we're dodging track kids as they run through the halls. They get really upset when we leave the woodshop (that's where we work) and they have to stop (OH NO! :ahh: ) and let people use the hallway. But they don't mind watching us build and see how our robot evolves throughout the season. Basketball is also running now, but we don't have any basketball players on the team. Other than those, lacrosse, softball, baseball, and spring track don't come until March as well and the fall sports don't affect anything. Basically winter sports and robotics clash a bit too much for someone to do both.

01-28-2005, 05:35 PM
I recall a while back, during the robotics off-season, I participated on the Varsity Tennis Team. It is impossible to participate in a sport during the robotics season, not only is it a strain on your grades, studies, but also a harsh treatment on your body.

I participated in Indoor Track and Field all four years of high school. The only conflict between that and robotics was that I missed some of the saturday build sessions (only the morning) because I would be at a track meet until 1 or 2pm. Half of the inddor meets were on Fridays which did not conflict with the robotics meetings at all.

01-28-2005, 06:44 PM
I wrestled and do robotics at the same time for a while, but i had to leave practice early every day to go straight to robotics.

After I realized i needed time for homework, i decided to participate in robotics instead of wrestling

So i guess i dont find time for both :confused:

Arefin Bari
01-28-2005, 06:51 PM
... That is why I just play sports for fun, not professionally or for a team.

but then again, isn't FIRST a sport? I mean come on now, our championship is nothing less than the super bowl. :)


01-28-2005, 08:20 PM
It is very difficult to engage in any activity other than FIRST, so I'm not involved in anything other than robotics.

You can try playing during the off-season...

Wait. "Off-season"....?

01-28-2005, 08:34 PM
I know that sports are very time consuming ... not from personal experience but from watching most of my friends.

In our team, we have a few people that do sports. Two of them, both girls in the soccer team, go to practice first and then come to Robotics. Usually, Robotics is until quite late, so they still have time to make it to the meetings ... and of course they come on the weekends. :D

Something to consider as well, is that Robotics takes up quite a lot of time for those 6 weeks and if you have lots of other activities to do it might interfere. What I'm trying to say is that you have to weigh the pros and cons and if you can drop some activities maybe you should. If you can't, do the best to manage them all, without killing yourself. :)

D.J. Fluck
01-28-2005, 09:00 PM
Fortunately soccer was in the fall, but I did miss a few of the fall meetings...i'd come walking in to the once a week meetings starting in november and december and people would be like "Who are you? Who who?" :D

I had a friend who was on the swim team try to do robotics one year and there was no way he could do both..

01-28-2005, 09:04 PM
Right now, I have that same problem. I do track, fencing, and a bunch of other clubs and now I have to go to robotics everyday of the week. at first i was planning to go to robotics three days and the rest for fencing and track.
But now Im going everyday to robotics right after school instead. I only go to robotics late on Fridays to go to Fencing and Track for a little bit. I chose robotics over clubs and sports because I think that it is more important to me and it will help me a lot more in the future than the clubs and sports. after robotics, I have time after dinner to do homework so thats not a real big issue.

Matt Attallah
01-28-2005, 09:13 PM
When I was in high school - I had Football during the fall and that hurt for the fund raising. I'd call up one of the mentors at the time ask them what happened and what can I do to help out. Nothing much more than that.

The short time that I wrestled wrestling came first. It's a team sport where you ARE needed to get points for your team. Robotics was just in the building faze and I made it once-n-a while, but than I just quit wrestling and took up robotics 100% of the time...

01-28-2005, 10:09 PM
I run track also.Track practice goes from the end of school 2:52 through 4:15. Robotics practice also starts at the end of school but goes till 6:00. I have told the track coach about my situation therefore i get started early on my practice and usually get to robotics about 4:00. Maybe this will help you some maybe not either way it works well for me.

01-28-2005, 10:10 PM
I'm a member of Robotics, community service club, astronomy club, (Varsity) Fencing, etc... and all i have to say is get ahead on the weekends. Usually my day goes like this:
As soon as school ends Fencing, then i got 20 mins for dinner before robotics, after i return do work for a bit then sleep. Usually robotics is enough free/break time for me.

01-28-2005, 10:24 PM
In high school I was captain of the Indoor and Outdoor track teams as well as the soccer team. I made a deal with my track coach to come to all meets and 50% of the practices as long as I did my required work outs at night. So first was #1 for me.

Beth Sweet
01-28-2005, 10:25 PM
Sport conflicts were a big deal for our team this year. Also one that I really didn't expect to encounter (call me judgemental, but on HOT, it just wasn't ever that much of an issue). Team 1504 is basically comprised of the Grand Ledge swimmers and the Okemos wrestlers. To say the least, as a first year team of a lot of athletes, scheduling was interesting, and we ended up waiting to meet until 6-9 pm on weeknights and 10-4 on Saturdays. While sometimes the kids have to miss Saturdays, we're leinient on that if they're doing school activities.

01-29-2005, 06:56 AM
my track practice ends at 4:30 and robotics starts at 6:00 but it involves a 10 minute commute home from school and a 15-30 minute commute to robotics (depending on traffic and which gate at the base is open) This gives me about 45 min - 1 hour to start homework and eat something. I have to do the rest of my homework after robotics from 9:30 and on

01-29-2005, 07:43 AM
well, i do:
-varsity tennis (1st seed for singles and doubles)
-envirothon states comptn
-6 APs and 2 honors

and they are all going on as i speak...tennis started last week, envirothon's starting next week, and robotics obviously has been going on...and classes don't stop for anyone.

so, i usually go to tennis practice from 2:45-4:00, and catch up with the robot from 4-5pm and go home (robotics is only 2:45-5 so they clash). i'm the only programmer so all i do is go home, write stuff, and test it if we are able to and do some other behind the scene work (editing pprs like the chairman's award and w/e else....). i make it so my presence isn't needed at all times. when envirothon starts up, i'll be doing that every wednesday and tennis games start in feb so i'll be doing that tues/thurs whole day. so basically it'll be saturdays where i'm really active. and ap classes...heh well let's just say i take it one day at a time.

i wish it were easier but everything goes on at the same time. i don't get any sleep though but who needs sleep?

Can't See Me
01-29-2005, 10:24 AM
Well, I don't know about any one else, but I consider robotics to be a sport... but that's just me.

01-29-2005, 10:35 AM
I do swimming and robotics (and later on track). I don't really have any trouble with it - swimming is from 3:00 - 5:00, robotics is 6:00 - 10:00. I go home between - eat, shower, start my homework and go to robotics a little late - 6:30ish. After robotics I finish my homework and go to bed. It's not too difficult. The only time I Have trouble is when I have a meet, it usually ends around 6:00 so I get to robotics around 7:30.

Track for me is 3:00 - 4:00 so I have no trouble with that at all. :confused:

The problem isn't between sports and robotics overlapping, its finding the time to do homework. :rolleyes:

01-29-2005, 12:16 PM
Well, I don't think this will help you a whole lot, but I just don't do sports....

Not a good plan.

I've never done a sport during the FIRST season, but--in addition to my duties as strategy team lead--I currently am in a play, doing Mock Trial, editing the newspaper, and helping plan/performing in a rock concert at my school. Not to mention school, college apps, scholarships, etc.

The key is to do your homework as efficiently as possible, and do as little of it as possible.

Also, be able to delegate tasks to capable, reliable people who get stuff done.

And not need to sleep.


01-29-2005, 12:49 PM
For me right now it is...
-Science Olympiad projects
-7 honors classes
-Skiing (club)
-Fall and spring I manage a portfolio of stocks in a national competition.
-Spring I play laccrosse because it is not school affiliated. The baseball coaches didn't like the time that I missed, so I dropped it for a new less committed sport.
-And the most Important...ROBOTICS

I dunno who said it... but "No one has more time than anyone else"
You have to manage in your priorities.


01-29-2005, 01:28 PM
Last year I used to do track and robotics. I also did a whole bunch of other clubs as well, but they didn't interfere too much. Usually at robotics we stayed until 8 or 9 every night so I would just head over to Robotics after track and practice driving the robot. I would suggest that you talk to your coaches and your team advisor to sort your conflict out. If all else fails, quit your sports teams and support your robotics team. :D

GO 1403!!!

01-29-2005, 02:14 PM
Well I have ballet 4 times a week, so I just end up coming late.

.. at least Track doesn't start until AFTER robotics

01-29-2005, 05:41 PM
I find it hard to work my 2 jobs and go to volleyball practice and also make time for robotics but i just find that sleeping and homework are overrated and not really needed....i get really tired during the week so i just sleep on sunday. also our robotics team meets for a little over 6 hours each night after school (3-9) I normally go to practice first as it only goes until like 5. then robotics...on sat its easy cuz all i have is robotics....so thats my suggestion Just dont sleep or dont do homework or both!

01-29-2005, 09:56 PM
I play baseball and do robotics. Baseball goes from three to six Monday-Friday, and from 10 to 1 on Saturdays. Robotics goes until 9 Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday, and Sunday, so I go straight there after practice. Doesn't leave much time for homework though...I'm also missing a few games to go to the competitions, but my coach was semi-OK with that. I guess what it all boils down to is compromise as much as you can, and if you can't, figure out where your strengths are and where your priorities are. Good Luck!

01-29-2005, 10:12 PM
I guess I live on the edge, with Track (Throwing, at that), Robotics, and a Diff Eq / Linear Algebra class that ends at 3:30. Also, freaking Caltech only gives provisional admissons, which means that I have to get A's this semester too (B's or a few C's will make them reject me).
I have missed about two track practices so far, and I have little time for homework, etc. since track is about 2 hrs and Robotics is about 4 hours per day. I guess the best answer is to live on the edge until you collapse, Then drop stuff.

01-29-2005, 10:48 PM
FIRST is my sport most definetly and then again i'm challenged when it comes to sports, i'm a walking disaster basically.

but i know various people that have done sports and other activities and robotics. just choose what you like but don't compeletly stress yourself out

01-30-2005, 02:24 AM
I don't have to worry about sports because i'm bad at all of them except monday. I have been on a bowling team for a while though and during last season, a kid on my team from another high school was never there because of robotics. I also have a flexible scheduel for league games because i can pre or post bowl.

01-30-2005, 10:42 AM
during FIRST i dont do any school sports. basically just for my own enjoyment such as snowboarding. and before FIRST season is CC and after is track/field.
all the while taking a few APs ACCLs Honors. and also i started to work this winter. and i race rc cars which takes about a full saturday almost every week. (not including all the stuff i fiddle with every day) but then again im not doing FIRST this season so i wonder how thats gonna work out next year. maybe i should l;imit the time im on CD if im too busy :p

03-21-2005, 11:45 AM
...I just quit my lacrosse team, not enough time to
- Learn 3dsmax
- Learn Inventor
- Advance in c
- Write a field positioning system
- Go to nationals
- Do homework
and still play lacrosse.

dubious elise
03-21-2005, 06:32 PM
Tennis for girls has always been in the fall, so I've never really had a problem with robotics (just interfering with fundraising on occasion, but nothing too bad). On the other hand, I just found out today that I got cut from the soccer team because I missed half of tryouts to go to Boilermaker. What can I say? Robotics has way better people and is way more fun any day!
Besides, I do need some free time to teach tennis lessons, teach special needs religion classes, get confirmed (on hold until after nationals :ahh: ), work on AP homework (bad decision, only one AP and one college class next year...), and practice violin. Though, I must admit, sleep is always nice too...

03-21-2005, 11:08 PM
I play football, but luckily that is in the fall so I only miss the pre-season team building stuff.

However at my school, football is a legacy (I won't even begin to go into it), so I have to weightlift throughout the entire year. This cuts into about the first 45 mins of the meeting, which is usually just anouncments.

The major thing that I did was to talk to my coaches and our mentor and work out a compramise, on a bye week, I could miss two days of practice to attend team building.

03-22-2005, 01:07 AM
My advice is play a fall sport and/or spring sport and to be organized. If your school is the main school on your FIRST team, then it's both your robotics advisors and coaches who should understand you need to do certain things like go to robotics compeitions, show up on kick off, make an appearence at robotics 2-3 days a week and maybe need to leave practice early those days. Your robotics advisors need to understand you need to be at games, practices, conditioning training, etc.., and I'm sure the coaches and advisors in MOST cases would be understanding.

I'm almost anal retentive with my organization as far as how I spend time. I work everyday, participate in the Co-op program my high school has avaible, I also am active in NHS, president of our SkillsUSA chapter, cross country captain, and maintaing a 2nd rank in my class.

NHS and SkillsUSA I only attend meetings during school hours, with the exception of the SkillsUSA Championships and NHS trip to NYC (good free food).

I work everyday, I'm just lucky my school has a program that allows juniors and seniors to leave school during the school day while in shop (tech school.. we go half the year in our shop half in academics). I would work until 2:30, go to school and practice whatever sport I was playing that season. During robotics I would work from 9-4:30 during my shop period or 2:30-5 during my academics, then go to robotics for 6pm, and prioritized robotics over working at the school open house and other SkillsUSA and NHS activities.

If you have understanding people surrounding you and know how to organize your time wisely you can effectivly compete in sports, robotics, and be in any club that you choose at your school.

03-22-2005, 07:11 AM
My son sat on the bench for the entire lacrosse game last night because he did not attend the previous practice and game. He missed those because he was driving a bot that was on the finalist alliance at the Chesapeake.
The coach seems to understand. Probably doesn't like it, but understands.

03-22-2005, 09:39 AM
Well since most of our active team members are in sports our meetings didnt start untill 6pm and went till we wanted to finish. But between Swimming and Track I was only late a handfull of times.

03-22-2005, 10:23 AM
There is only so much time in a day. It is extremely difficult to compete competitively, and participate in robotics. I've been racing bikes on the road for 6 years now, and a member of 1114 for 3 years now.

In my rookie year (2003) I didn't even really know what FIRST was. So I went about my training normally through the winter and into the spring. I missed a couple of days of regionals because of training, and I didn't attend championship, which I later regretted. So at the end of robotics season, I had decided that next year I would attempt to do both seriously. Cycling and Robotics.

2004 rolls around. I had earned myself a spot on an Amateur cycling team in Canada. Build season comes, and before I knew it, I hadn't been on my bike in a month. Regionals come, and the weathers getting nicer, but I still wasn't training. Regionals are just too time consuming and tiring to do both there. We (1114) traveled 6 out of 8 weekends in March and April, and I hadn't gotten nearly the amount of training in necessary to race competitively with my team.

Once regionals and championship had ended, I was back training normally, but my form and fitness never recovered back to the level of 1 year ago. I got kicked off my cycling team, and swore I'd never let robotics interfere with cycling again.

And yet here I am, 1 year later. Do I regret wasting an entire cycling season? nope, not for a second. All the places I went with robotics, and all the people I met more than make up for it.

03-22-2005, 10:41 AM
I just tell the robotics coach that sports (soccer and lacrosse) come before the meetings and a go to the competitions as the human player which is where sports come in to play with robotics.

03-22-2005, 08:16 PM
im an aspiring football and lacrosse player as well as a wrestler. i take all honors classes, no free period, and im also a musician as well. what do i do? i leave school at 3, go to wrestling, after that pick up food, go to robotics from 630-9, then i come home and shower, and i start hw at 10. and then i wake up 630 the following day and do it all over. :ahh:
Sounds a bit like my schedule but only during the spring. I used to do Football Basketball/robotics and Track my freshman year. Last year I quit basketball and my schedule was football robotics and track. Football wasn't fun anymore and got cultish so I dropped that and now I only have to work on track. It sucks now before nationals because I'll do my track workout and then at a meeting ill be asked to do human player running. :( they still want us to make a human player training video but were goin to have to make it on days we dont have track. Even as a thrower we still run and lift which wears you out. Its not as bad as it was and I like it the way it is now.


03-22-2005, 10:21 PM
Even though this was three years ago, my senior year schedule was like this...

School: 7:25am to 12pm
Internship: 12:15pm to 2:45pm
Track Practice: 3:00pm to 5pm
*Mechanical: 5:15pm to 8/10pm
*Software: 8/10pm to 11pm/1am

FIRST and SPORTS are possible!!!!

Learn to do your homework during class breaks, over lunch, and on the bus/car rides if you're not driving. The minutes add up fast. I don't always recommend this, but if your teacher teaches too slowly or goes off on long tangents about their weekend, you can finish some calculus problems or a paragraph or two for your paper between taking class notes.

If your team works heavily with Engineers, they usually don't get off of work until 5pm always, so they didn't mind me coming a little late to meetings. Having the different sub-teams meet at different times helps a lot too (ie: Mechanical and electrical early evening, Software and driver practice later the evening, animation and other teams on the weekends.)

Carol K.
03-22-2005, 11:26 PM
I find it hard to work my 2 jobs and go to volleyball practice and also make time for robotics but i just find that sleeping and homework are overrated and not really needed....i get really tired during the week so i just sleep on sunday. also our robotics team meets for a little over 6 hours each night after school (3-9) I normally go to practice first as it only goes until like 5. then robotics...on sat its easy cuz all i have is robotics....so thats my suggestion Just dont sleep or dont do homework or both!

That is exactly what I was thinking. :) If robotics goes on later in the evening than your athletic commitments, then it makes much more sense to go to practice before going to robotics. It is definitely worth sacrificing 2 hours of a 6 hour meeting if it means staying off the bench for the entire season. As for me, i work sunday, so I don't get a single day off. but in the end it pays, skipping more school and more games for the competitions. Sleeping and homework really are overrated. :D

03-23-2005, 07:19 AM
I believe I have already posted for this thread but I'll have another go at it. At the time I was in high school, I was on the robotics team full time and played hockey and tennis on part of the time. Believe me, it is not easy balance. I was going to school, working part time, and participating in some sports just to keep me sane.

Today, I am in college and I try to contribute to FIRST as much as I can. I carry the usual course load of about 15 to 18 credits. I also am on the Central Connecticut State University Pro Paintball Team. That's alot of fun.

From what I have learned, I believe everyone should have at least some other hobbies or sports besides FIRST to participate in. You know, something to do during the off season.

I know some wish that FIRST went year round LOL. Well yeah, in some cases it does. But you know what I mean....right? lol

Erin Rapacki
03-23-2005, 07:39 AM
When I was in high school I played a sport for 11 out of the 12 sporting seasons offered (3 seasons per school year). I played soccer and did indoor & outdoor track. The season I missed was Senior year indoor track because I did decide to focus on robotics more. The previous year, junior year, I went to school, track practice, hour for dinner/nap, robotics, did homework until 2am, and repeat. I'm a person who likes my sleep so I had to make a sacrifice for robotics (indoor track) but I went running on my own every afternoon anyway.

Sports & physical activity are important to me and I'll never sacrifice them completely for school or robotics. I run 5-miles every day, I'm going backpacking in the White Mountains for two nights this weekend, and I hang glide regularly. Robotics is fun, but don't sacrifice you're health for it. I believe that staying fit & healthy is a No#1 priority and in the long run... the better shape you're in the more productive you are anyway.

Pat Roche
03-23-2005, 08:24 AM
During high school I was basketball player and I was lead/assistant lead etc. for three years. I was able to put about 300(my sophmore year)-500(junior and senior years) hours (I also had open slots in the day where I could work too) in during build season even with basketball games and practices during the week and teh weekend. It just takes alot of time management and dedication.

Kris Mackinnon
03-23-2005, 11:11 AM
Im in a lot of different stuff other then robotics. I have drum lessons, band, 4-H,art lessons, and girls golf. I had to leave an hour to a half hour earler during build season so I could make lessons. 4-h uckie for me it was only once a month. Band intfered a lot so if band or ROTC had somthing going on almost our whole team missed somedays. But our mentors been knd an let us leave earlier during build season. We also had a study time through. So most of us mange to finsh our homework on team. But yeah it was really stressful for a lot of us to keep these things and do robotics at the same time.