I’ve been in some sort of “sport” since I was in diapers, whether it be dance, gymnastics, tennis, softball, or running.
Being active in sports taught me the value of a good work ethic from a young age. Sports have taught me independence, how to stand up for myself, discipline, goal setting, how to take criticism, and how to be humble.
I’m convinced I wouldn’t have made the journey from diaper dancer to doctor without the influence of sports. Here are a few key reasons why:
1. The Ability to Take Criticism: Having multiple coaches, all with different coaching styles, has helped me learned to filter “good criticism” from “that person is having a bad day and taking it out on me.” In addition, learning to take corrections and apply them quickly is often the difference between a good athlete and a great athlete. Same goes for a student or budding professional. The perfectionist in me can sometimes have a hard time hearing criticism, but I remind myself that it will a) only help me to improve and b) better to know now than to make the same mistake again. Knowing what corrections I need to make gives me a tangible plan of attack for improvement.
2. Work Ethic and Discipline: If you want to win or be noticed for your sport, you have to put in the time and effort. In balancing school, practice, and social life requires you to do what you are supposed to be doing when you supposed to be doing it — aka discipline. Learning these two skills is fairly paramount to doing well in most anything.
3. How To Stand Up For Yourself: There is no greater teacher of self defense than being cheated in a tennis match. If you want to have a fair match, you better speak up and stand your ground. [Put your kids in tennis just to learn that skill.]
Sports have taught me to never put limits on my life (or that if I do put limits, it is of my choosing, not because I could not). It has taught me that I am strong and capable.
Should I have a daughter, I’ll be putting her in sports once she can support her own head [and the bow I will put on it] :).
Here are two cool causes/promotions that support strong women in sports!
Activyst promotes female empowerment through sports in developing countries. Athletic bags made by Activyst (and bought by the fashionable female athlete) help fund some fairly awesome endeavors: a soccer field and girls’ community center in Nicaragua and a soccer team in Uganda. Purchase one. Spread the word!
Believe I Am is wants to hear about the superwomen in your life! One lucky gal will get an Erica Sara for Believe I Am Strong necklace and a “strong” tank. Who inspires you? TELL THEM.
TELL ME: THE MOST IMPORTANT LESSONS YOU’VE LEARNED THROUGH SPORTS AND WHAT SPORT/ACTIVITY YOU DID AS A KID.
Until next time…