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Wake Up To The Power Of One

6 Steps to Finding the Right Sport for You

Becoming a better athlete is a lifelong journey.
You never stop growing, learning new skills, and evolving as an athlete.

When you’re starting your fitness journey, it can be hard to figure out what your next step might be. Most people start their journey at the gym, with another type of individual exercise like running or even a group exercise like yoga. One major motivator that is missing when it comes to solo workouts is competition. Of course, there are many different ways to stay motivated and evolve as an athlete, but nothing beats the competition for us. The thrill and adrenaline of competing, the joy of winning, and the excitement of doing it all over again. 

We know how difficult it can be to figure out where you belong in the athletic world, so we’re here to help. 

“To begin to think with purpose, is to enter the ranks of those strong ones who only recognize failure as one of the pathways to attainment.” – James Allen

Here is a 6-step guide to help you find the right sport for you.

Step 1: Identify your goals 

Setting long-term goals is one of the best ways to stay motivated and help you figure out where you want to go on your journey. Not only does it help you figure out what you’re trying to accomplish, but it can also help you figure out what you need to do to get there. Try to think of realistic things you want to achieve, how quickly you want to get there, and how you’ll do it. It can be hard to shift your thinking from short-term to long-term, but when you’re only thinking about what you can accomplish today, it can be hard to motivate yourself for what you can achieve tomorrow. This goal can be as simple as “get a first place ribbon” or “beat your personal best race time.” Setting long-term goals and visualizing your future can help you make strong, informed decisions that help you get where you want to go while being reminded of what you’re working towards and why you wanted it in the first place.

Step 2: Assess your abilities and interests

Before you decide what sport you want to pursue, it’s important to consider your current abilities. Obviously, you don’t have to be an expert in whatever sport you’re considering from the start, but some of your current abilities might lend themselves well to a particular sport. For example, if you’re a fast person with a lot of endurance, you might consider running. If you’re a strong skater, hockey might be a good choice. It’s not just about your physical abilities, but your mental abilities as well; are you competitive? Do you like playing for an audience? Do you prefer to work on your own instead of with a team? All these aspects of your personality and physical strengths should play a role in your decision and what you’re interested in. If you choose a sport that you’re not totally interested in, you won’t get the satisfaction you’re looking for.

Step 3: Ask your friends

Getting recommendations from friends and workout buddies around you can be a good way to find a sport that suits you that you might not have seen for yourself before. Your friends have different perspectives of you, so they know you better from the outside. Get advice from your sporty, athletic friends or even your sports-watching enthusiast friends. You can also get advice on the sport you’re considering and get their opinions on whether it seems the right fit for you. This is the chance to explore all the pros and cons of the sport you’re considering and the ones that may be suggested to you!

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Step 4: Consider your lifestyle

If there’s one thing you shouldn’t have to sacrifice is your lifestyle. No matter what sport you choose, there’s no doubt it will have a big impact on your lifestyle, whether it's game schedules, new workout routines, practice schedules, or new social schedules. Of course, you can always try to work on time management, but some sports are more time-demanding than others; you don’t want to overwhelm yourself and take away your personal time. If one sport is typically played on a weekend, but you have a routine of going on a hike with a friend every weekend, that game schedule will clash with your lifestyle, so you might want to consider another option.

Step 5: Build a strong foundation

Athletes are notorious for diving headfirst into a new, intense training routine or new skills. But you can’t just jump into a sport and expect to be amazing at it immediately. You need to start by building a good grasp of the basics. Even if you’re a seasoned athlete or a frequent gym goer, you’ll still benefit from starting from the beginning with exercises that will help improve your overall skills and skills specific to the sport you’re exploring. Starting from the basics will help prep your body for more intense training later and build your stamina. So, focus on the smaller building blocks before you jump into the big leagues. 

Step 6: Trial and error

The first sport you try doesn’t have to be a perfect fit. In fact, you should try a variety of activities before you settle on one. This way, you can compare your options, which is especially helpful when you’re interested in multiple sports. You get to explore your options and choose which ones tick the most boxes for you. It’s all about trial and error. Even the best of the best go through this process. Even Michael Jordan explored baseball before later opting for the NBA, where he did pretty well for himself! It’s about going through the process, exploring your options, and making the best, informed decision.

The most important thing to remember is to stick with it. Stay motivated and excited about the possibilities and the fact that you’re trying something new, growing, and improving as an athlete! Even though finding the right fit for you is all about doing what feels best for you, whether running, soccer, football, or golf, the options and opportunities are endless. No matter where you are in your journey, we’re here to help with advice and tips on mental health, nutrition, motivation, and even podcast recommendations. Expert advice from us to you, that's the D-Word.

“Somewhere behind the athlete you’ve become and the hours of practice and the coaches who have pushed you is a little girl who fell in love with the game and never looked back… play for her.” — Mia Hamm

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