In sports, confidence is key. It’s inevitable that an athlete will fail at some point in their career. Although failure is never fun, being and staying confident is what will help athletes move past their mistakes and continue playing at a high level. Having confidence in yourself and your teammates is what helps athletes excel in everything they do.
At Warren Academy, we work with a number of young athletes and teams during off-season training. Our programs are designed to help athletes improve their sport-related skills, such as strength, speed and agility. No matter how hard an athlete trains and no matter how hard an athlete plays, failure is going to happen from time to time. Below, we go over some ways athletes can stay confident in themselves and overcome these inevitable failures.
Let go of fear
Oftentimes in sports, athletes can get nervous before or during a game. This is especially true with young athletes. Although nerves can sometimes help drive good performance, they can also lead to fear. When athletes play fearful or scared, the chances of messing up increases. By letting go of the fear of messing up, athletes will be able to stay confident in themselves!
Don’t compare yourself to others
Another thing that can break an athlete's confidence is when he or she compares themselves to others. As an athlete, you have to do your own thing. Comparing your game to others isn’t fair to yourself, and it can in turn can hurt your confidence in yourself.
Visualize yourself succeeding
Another thing athletes can do to help stay confident is by visualizing themselves succeeding. This is very beneficial for athletes to do prior to a big game, as visualization helps them ensure they know exactly what to do. It will also remind them that they are capable of doing so.
Focus on the process
By only looking at the results, it may sometimes be hard to stay confident in yourself. But by staying the course, working hard and focusing on the process, it’s easier to keep your confidence high as an athlete.
Don’t try to be perfect
Every athlete should attempt to be as perfect as they can be, but they shouldn’t expect themselves to be perfect every single play, practice or game. Having a more functional mindset, by understanding that you don’t always have to be perfect to play your best, is one of the best ways for athletes to stay confident throughout the entire season!
Don’t hang your head too long
When we fail, we tend to think about it. The first step in overcoming failure is having a short memory. A good rule of thumb is to think about what happened for 30 minutes after your game, and then only reflect back when working to become better. Constantly thinking about what you could’ve done better will only have negative effects on an athlete’s mentality. Stay focused on your goals, and your confidence will stay strong.
In every sport, confidence is key. For athletes to excel at a high level and play to their full potential, they need to stay confident in themselves no matter what. Keep these things in mind as you progress through your seasons!