It’s a summer Sunday morning, and all the neighborhood kids are gaming it up in their living rooms.
Headsets on, it’s a League of Legends day with friends—and it could get unruly.
One kid, though, wakes up early to review the lineup of early MLB baseball games—so he will be ready to watch his favourite players take the field.
Of course, being up early started off with a nutritious breakfast – initiated by parents who understand that a healthy body and positive mindset are important.
He’s trying to reach his friends to get the perfect Sunday wiffle ball game going—to try out the latest update to his swing, emulating his favourite player—but it looks like he’s going to be flying solo today.
So instead, he bounces a tennis ball off the wall.
He decides to practice a little defensive work in the living room.
He mimics the last play he just watched from his hometown team.
In his head, the crowd goes wild!
Another great play by this future first-ballot, Hall-of-Famer.
This is what it might look like at the start of a 10-year-old’s athletic career—with the right support and the right guidance.
Falling in love with a sport is the first step on the path to becoming an elite athlete. That passion—that fire—has to burn inside.
If the fire isn’t burning, becoming an elite athlete could be difficult. Without the proper support, emerging athletes could suffer from self-sabotage and self-doubt, potentially quitting their sport entirely.
But suppose the passion and unconditional love for a sport has an opportunity to manifest. In that case, the trajectory of the aspiring athlete can endure – without compromising the hard work and perseverance required to get to the next level.
Ultimately, those who want it—fight for it. These athletes won’t simply plan for short-term gains but also focus on long-term, big-picture goals.
Elite athletes roll with the punches because being told no is just one more obstacle to overcome. Elite athletes will work at skill acquisition until they get it right—taking swings, ground balls, and throws until they become masters of their domain.
They will put themselves in situations that fuel their fire.
They aren’t easily caught up in drama commonly associated with school and friends. As a result, these athletes are more likely to remove themselves from situations that could get them in trouble.
What they will do – is immerse themselves in an environment that encourages and facilitates high-performance. Athletes compete and seek out training programs that teach them how to:
- Jump higher.
- Run faster.
- Become stronger.
If they aren’t meeting sport-specific benchmarks, they desire to work with the right people who can help get them there. As such, experienced coaches are sought out and brought into the mix. The right coaches help athletes along their journey, preparing them to meet and exceed short and long-term goals.
It takes a village to create a great athlete; nobody can do it completely on their own.
It also takes great parents or role models. It takes dedicated coaches to push them when needed.
Truly, elite athletes are made from actual blood, sweat, and tears – in a process full of support, guidance, and the ever-evolving motivation to be better.