by Dale Trenholm
February 11, 2014 (ISN) – You will experience many stages and challenges while playing the sport you are most passionate about during high school, university, or at a professional level.
You must acquire many traits, both mental and physical, to align the stars correctly to have the best chance at receiving a scholarship and/or making a living doing the sport you love. No matter what stage, there will always be Blood, Sweat and Tears along the way.
Here are some interesting statistics: Only 6 percent of athletes will make it on to a college team after graduating from high school; only 3 percent of athletes turn pro after college; only 0.19 percent of high school athletes will turn pro; only 2 percent of high school kids will receive an athletic scholarship; and only 3 percent of mma (mixed martial arts) athletes turn pro.
In men’s hockey, 1.3 percent of college players go on to play professionally, and 0.1 percent of high school players play professionally. No matter how you cut it, athletes have, on average, less than a two percent chance of making their sport a career. This is just the hard fact of reality.
This brings me to my point. Are you ready to do what is necessary to go after a scholarship or play professionally? During any stage of your sport journey, it is guaranteed there will be blood, sweat and tears along the way. As an athlete, you must be ready and willing to bleed more, sweat more, and cry more, either mentally or physically, to have a chance at overcoming the stages you experience while playing your sport.
One stage involves simply learning the fun of sport at an early age. Another stage occurs around 13 to 16 years of age when you must narrow down what sport you want to focus on. Out of the 5 or so sports you play, you must choose the one you love the most to focus on, which will give you the best chance for success at a university and/or professional level.
Once an athlete knows and is truly committed 100 percent to their chosen sport, then and only then will the stars align with their goals and aspirations. However, at the same time along the way, work hard in school or have some form of backup plan during school and at a university or pro level. Injury or unforeseen circumstances could force you out from your sport, so it is wise to have a backup plan.
Ultimately, if you are an athlete, there will be blood, sweat, and tears associated with your sport. If you are an aspiring athlete that has made your choice with the sport you want to focus on, there will be even more blood, sweat, and tears. The fact is, no matter what level (this is not a bad thing), B.S.T. is part of the reality of playing sports – and life.
The important three keys to remember for easing the pain associated with the blood, sweat, and tears are: have trusted and positive friends there to support you through the tough times, and two, the B.S.T. will pass, and three, someone is or has gone through what you are going through. You are not alone. I have a saying – never give up, never surrender!