MINOT, N.D. (KXNET) — You may remember when Olympic gymnast Simone Biles stepped away from competition at the last summer games to focus on her mental health.

That’s a message some people are sharing with college athletes in North Dakota.

Life as a student-athlete is often glorified, with scholarships and being able to travel the country.

“It’s not something you see. So, we’ll say a football player breaks his ankle, you see him with the crutches on the sidelines, you see him in the boot, you know that they physically can’t play. But, you don’t see the impact that mental health has on someone when their mental health is down. You can’t physically see them in pain, the same way you can for a physical injury,” said Minot State Football Player/Mental Health Panel Moderator, Philip Green.

Minot State started a Mental Health Panel, where they invited two student-athletes to share their stories with mental health, as well as coaches, athletic trainers, and others involved in athletics.

Student-athletes were able to ask questions to the panel about mental health.

“Your athletes are going to be at their best physically when their mental health is even better. Like, they’re going to perform better when they’re feeling good mentally, and so, just being able to bring light to that it’s okay to have mental health struggles, like being a college athlete is not easy, your time is busy,” added Green.

Student-athletes are pushed to be the best they can be both on the playing surface and in the classroom. If they are held to such high standards, then that can have a huge impact on them.

The stress while playing sports is one thing, but there are other stresses too.

Schedules for these athletes can be so busy with weights, class, and practice, that athletes barely have time for nutrition.

And what you eat directly impacts how you feel.

“We’ve had teammates lose 15 to 20 pounds during the season because they’re just go, go, go and their forgetting to eat. Like it seems so simple but you have so much to do that like those 20 minutes that you could be spending preparing a meal, getting that homework done that’s due that night kind of takes priority,” stated Green.

These athletes are often enduring 16 hours a day of work, and contrary to popular belief, full-ride scholarships are not as common as you may think.

Often times student-athletes work part-time jobs in order to be able to pay for school and other necessities.

That’s another stress student athletes endure on a daily basis.

This is the second Mental Health Panel that Minot State Athletes have hosted to show that speaking out is not a weakness, it’s a strength.