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7 Reasons Why You Have To Love Sports

February 26, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 129

You have to like sports, even if you're not a fan. If that doesn't make sense to you, allow me to explain.

Sports contain many of the essential traits of life which make a person successful and happy. Whether or not you are a fan of any particular sport, you need to appreciate what they are and what's going on within them. Let me be clear, you don't have to enjoy watching a quarterback drop back and throw a football down the field for a touchdown. However, if you want to be the best person you can be, you do need to examine what it took to make that throw possible.

Too often people look at sports as just the physical actions which make the sport go back and forth on television. The true lessons that can be taken from athletes and applied to the rest of life are much less the physical things and much more the mental things.

So what makes a good athlete and how does that pertain to you? Let's begin to look at few of the attributes that are important for more than just jocks.


I'll start with one that encompasses many others, dedication. Successful athletes are not born that way, they realize they have a passion for their craft and dedicate themselves to being the best they can be. There is no substitute for hard work, if you're sitting somewhere waiting for somebody to give you what you want in life, you 'll be waiting a long time. In the sports world this is even more true. As a player on the field, an athlete knows that there are always countless people working tirelessly to earn a spot themselves. Without dedication an athlete will never be the best they can be. They will never ascend to, or remain at, the level of success they desire or are capable of achieving. Neither will a writer, a business person, or any other person looking to be something more than they are today.


I said that dedication encompassed many others, and persistence can certainly be included in the dedication banner. However it's unique enough to deserve it's own explanation. A successful athlete spends countless hours honing their abilities and perfecting their approach. A baseball player may swing at, and miss, dozens of pitches throughout a season. However, he knows that with each miss he can learn something and apply it to his next hundred swings in hopes of missing less going forward. Athletes take the saying "If at first you don't succeed, try again" to an entirely new level. It is the mantra of an athlete, failure breads determination, forces education, ushers in fresh perspective, and requires steadfast persistence. A person who behaves this way in the real world with regards to their professional career will truly be a success waiting to happen.


Sports are demanding, they're hard. The skills necessary to perform well in most sports are difficult to learn and hard to consistently get right. Athletes learn early on a great respect for the game they're playing and for their opponents. Coaches demand respect, officials within the game demand respect, and the sport that can beat the athlete all by itself almost any time it wants certainly commands respect. There just is no way an athlete can get to the top without admiring and respecting those who came before them and those who are working just as hard along side them. Every person in life needs to have a healthy respect for the arena within which they're performing. It inspires, it motivates, it's admirable to peers, and it gains respect back from those peers. Gaining respect and trust and sharing those things mutually with those we're surrounded by, gives our lives a more robust meaning and makes our chances of success much greater.


Life is all about attitude, sports are all about attitude times ten. If an athlete sets their mind to working hard and being the best, they're nearly impossible to stop. On the other hand, if the same athlete allows a failure or a frustration to create negativity or pessimism, there is almost nothing that can be done to motivate that player. Athletes must take control of their emotions and their attitudes, regardless of outside conditions, and create a desire and will from within themselves. Outside influences bombard each and every person in life, some are good and some are downright negative. Each person though has control over their own attitude, always and no matter what. If you think today will be a good day, it probably will be.


Perhaps the most important cog in the wheel of success in sports is confidence. A player in any sport must believe that they can achieve the goal or accomplishment they desire. Coaches will spend entire seasons of effort chasing after this single characteristic in a player and in a team. A confident player is elevated by success and is instructed by defeat. They believe they are the best, they believe they will succeed, and they dedicate themselves to doing so. Having faith in yourself is the number one prerequisite for succeeding in your endeavors. Without confidence challenges are seen as game changers, as insurmountable obstacles. With confidence they are seen as ladders to the top rather than hurdles.


Almost all athletes learn early on that the people around them, be they teammates or just coaches, are just as valuable to their rise than they themselves are. It's one of the best lessons, in my opinion, that is learned during the course of youth sports and one that is carried on for as long as an athlete participates. The idea that you can't do it on your own, that no matter how strong and confident you are, there are going to have to be allies and partners to support and elevate you. In real life this can be family, friends, colleagues, or anybody who can contribute to your success and aid your development. This is also where some players and some professionals will cultivate their leadership skills. For any team or group of people to operate well together, their must be cohesion and chemistry. There must be those who lead and those who don't, taking the strengths of every member to create a group that's greater than the sum of its' parts.


Going back to the quarterback we used early on as an example, most people have no idea how much time went in to studying before he made that throw. Some play books in the National Football League are almost a thousand pages long, and the quarterback has to know every word inside and out. Combine that with having to know every defensive strategy that another team may attempt to deploy and the dozens of variations from game to game depending on specific players and coaches and field conditions, and a clearer picture starts to form of the enormous amount of information a top level athlete must know. Pitchers in baseball spend hours every day reading reports about their opponents strengths and weaknesses, and their opponents do the same about them.

Knowledge is an extremely important pillar in successful athletes, and in any professional in any walk of life.

There are other things also. Athletes take great care to remain as healthy as possible, eating the best foods that they can and working out with religious dedication. They 'play hard' and put it all on the line when they're in the field or on the court. Athletes form extremely strong bonds with those they play with and learn to rely on each other for support. They are motivated, they have a lot of energy, they know how to share credit, and on and on. There are many things athletes do everyday that everyday people can learn a great deal from.

Whether or not you appreciate the actual games, it's impossible to ignore the immense amount of hard work and true dedication it takes to succeed at a high level in sports. Almost everybody has a passion or an endeavor in their life which they would like to succeed at. If you want one piece of advice from me on how you can make that success a reality, it would be to look to the wide world of sports. You don't have to be a fan to like them.

Jake Bryan is a lead author in the Baseball Brains Training System. He wrote several chapters in the manual, and is the lead author of the blog.

Baseball Brains provides a ton of free content which is instructional, entertaining, and available in many places. The best two places to go are linked below. Thanks for reading!

The Blog: Baseball Brains Homepage:

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