Teaching Athletes to Fail

Posted on: February 21st, 2013 by Laura No Comments

failureI think it’s very important an athlete learns how to react to failure. I mean let’s face it, how many athletes will stay on top at all times? I don’t think it’s possible.

Many good athletes have the “luxury” to play on winning teams. And when/if they ever get on a losing team, they often don’t know how to react. If possible, I think it’s important at an early age that we instill in our kids that they can’t win all the time, that they can’t be the best all the time. Don’t misunderstand… I think it’s very important that we teach our kids to strive to be the best in their sport of choice. But a part of that is also learning how to lose, how to fail and how to fight back.

Failing is just a part of life, not just sports… school, social situations, relationships. I think it’s very important that both parents AND coaches talk to kids about failure. In my opinion, a good coach should tell his athletes that failure will happen, it is part of sports and that everyone will face it.

Did you know a good baseball player has a batting average over 300. That means that three times out of ten, they got a hit, but seven times out of ten they made an out. That’s a lot of failure, but still a great win in the game of baseball!

Kids need to learn to embrace and accept failure. Parents and coaches need to teach kids about failure to build them as better athletes and some day better adults. It’s important to talk about dealing with failure both emotionally and intellectually. Let’s face it, we can’t win all the time. We can’t be perfect all the time, but learning to take the steps to fight back and be the best you can be as a great life lesson. Often it’s the journey that is the best part of life!

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