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Freshmen Kyndal Jacobs and Jade Johnson Balance the Stresses That Competitive Dance Brings With The Workload Of High School

Freshmen+Kyndal+Jacobs+and+Jade+Johnson+Balance+the+Stresses+That+Competitive+Dance+Brings+With+The+Workload+Of+High+School
Credit to Violet Newton

Freshman year in high school can be a big jump from middle school in many ways. Trying to figure out how much school work you can handle while still balancing a healthy social life is a challenge that high school students are all too familiar with. Time consuming activities like clubs, sports and other extracurricular activities are a vital part of the high school experience but they can also be a big stresser if a healthy work-fun balance isn’t found. Freshman Kyndal Jacobs has been trying to find a healthy balance that works for her as her first semester of high school comes to an end.

“At school I’m on Knightline and I’m also a part of MAC scholars and student council,” Jacobs said. “I also dance outside of school and that takes a lot of my time so it’s been difficult finding a work balance.”

Dance can be a very competitive sport, so to keep up with the competition, certain dancers will practice for hours each day. However, an issue arises for high school dancers since dedicating so much time to an activity outside of school can lead to an imbalance of one having to take priority over the other. Making sure that one doesn’t completely overshadow the other is something that freshman dancer Jade Johnson has been ensuring doesn’t happen to herself. Johnson developed a system that works for her and allows her to balance both school and dance equally so one doesn’t overshadow the other.

“I dance on our Knightline team and for a dance studio called Steppin’ Up Dance Productions,” Johnson said. “I dance nearly everyday and sometimes it’s up to five hours at a time so I bring my backpack with me so during breaks I can work on my school work.”

Proper sleep is a very important aspect of being able to function properly throughout the school day. Being involved with a lot of extracurricular activities can make it so sleep becomes an afterthought at times which can in turn damper school work and the quality of other activities.

“I mean, I probably am getting like four to five hours of sleep a night which isn’t the best because I’m always tired,” Johnson said.

While Knightline itself is a huge commitment at school, dance studios outside of school can be just as time consuming and competitive. Jacobs dances at big conventions regularly so the training regimen that she goes through on a daily basis can be a grueling and challenging process. Recently, Jacobs won a national championship in the 13-14 age talent category at the Talent on Parade Nationals. The enormous amount of time and effort that went into Jacobs winning at a national dance competition is something that most high schoolers couldn’t even fathom.

“I’ve been doing this for a decade and it’s been many, many hours of practicing for that one moment,” Jacobs said. “I came first in a competition at nationals and it’s like that moment is what all my practice has built towards.”

While the time commitment and stress that comes with such a busy schedule is something that is not to be understated, Jacobs and Johnson both wouldn’t change how they spend their time. Doing things that they both enjoy while balancing the difficult high school workload that they are still adjusting to is important to both girls.

“I mean I wouldn’t be doing what I do outside of school if I couldn’t handle it or if I didn’t like it,” Johnson said. “All the stuff I do I enjoy and it can be stressful but it’s not something that’s too much for me to bear.”

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