From youth through college and a short stint as a professional football player, to now owning my own gym (Boost Performance Center in Corona CA) and being a coach, nothing has shaped my life more than sports.  It has literally been my way of life for my entire life and has not only taught me lessons that helped me grow as a person but has also allowed me to make a living for myself.  Would you call that success?  Some might, others might say I’m a washed up has-been who lives vicariously through the kids I coach..maybe so.  The fact is, success as an athlete isn’t that black and white.  It’s not just about signing letters of intent, or multi-million dollar contracts (even though those things are cool).  It’s about the person you become on your athletic journey. The leadership and teamwork skills you learn during competition, the physical and mental strength you gain from all the long hours of practice, and more importantly the grit you develop to keep going despite setbacks in pursuit of your goals.  There are levels to finding success as an athlete and we need to start talking more about them because I believe they’re greater than any type of monetary value that sports can offer.

But first, let’s get one thing straight; Talent does not equal success.  I’ll say it again so it’s clear, TALENT DOES NOT EQUAL SUCCESS!!!  The world is filled with talented people who aren’t successful at anything at all. Facts!!  Yes there probably was, and still is someone out there who is better than Michael Jordan, and the same can be said for Tom Brady.  And don’t get me wrong Jordan and Brady are wildly talented in their own right, but their talent only got them through the door.  Who they were, or better yet what they became, is what kept them at the top.  Today, a successful athlete looks like someone announcing a scholarship offer on twitter or an athlete achieving a big payday, and honestly that could be success for those individuals.  But let’s be real, the vast majority of athletes will never achieve those types of moments.  So what does that mean?  Do you look back on the time spent doing something you love and consider it a failure?  I don’t believe so.

— Coach Bass

If you’re reading this I’m assuming you’re an athlete, and with that in mind I want you to think about where you are today versus where you were when you first started competing in your sport.  From then to now, all the things you were willing to do to improve, that progress, is really how we should begin measuring success in sports.  Here’s another fact, participating in sports has the power to shorten life’s learning curve, helping young individuals learn critical lessons that can lead to a much more fruitful life.  Studies have been done, there is a direct correlation between participation in sports and higher gpa outcomes, emotional development, time management skills, decisiveness in high pressure situations and overall improved self-esteem and confidence.  Are you not a successful athlete to develop these types of skills through sports and lead a more fruitful life because of it?

As you continue to walk your walk as an athlete, be sure to acknowledge the small successes along the way.  It could be earning a starting position on your team, setting a new personal best, taking on the hectic schedule as an athlete while still maintaining a high GPA, or maybe just making the team. These are all successes.  You started your journey where you were and now you’re someone better.  This is how we need to look at success as athletes.  A never ending climb to achieve new heights and unlock more and more of our potential. Perseverance is a powerful trait that not many have, but as athletes it’s our greatest asset. Sports helps us build this skill, and as long as we continue to harness it in any endeavor in life, that is success. – Boostman

Coach Bass

Owner, Boost Training Systems
Level 1 & 2 Coach Bommarito Performance