Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Preparation, Hard Work And Athletic Success Go Together

There is no substitute for preparation and hard work when it comes to succeeding in your sport! All other things being equal, the athlete or team that has prepared and worked harder will win (9 out of 10 times)!

Preparation and hard work will also give an athlete or team one of the most important ingredients it takes to succeed---CONFIDENCE! Self confidence takes away much of the anxiety that comes with competing on a high level.

Self confidence allows the athlete to enjoy the sport and compete to win. I was looking at an interview of Tiger Woods and the interviewer asked him how he handles the pressures of playing in a major golf tournament (like the Masters).

Tiger's response was something along these lines: that it was FUN to play golf when the pressure was the greatest! You see, because he works so hard and prepares himself (along with having crazy talent), he is able to relax and depend on his skills to win the tournament.

As you advance to the next level of competition, preparation and hard work becomes more critical. The margin for error decreases because all the athletes are so good.

I can remember my first scrimmage in college. What went through my mind was this: I'm not in high school anymore. My teammates are all so good and I had better work harder just to keep up!

Getting stronger and faster helped my self confidence. Being prepared for team meetings and studying the opponent also helped my self confidence.

There is no subsitute for preparation and hard work if you want to succeed in your sport!

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Mark Dilworth, BA, PES
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