The late John Wooden, one of the greatest college basketball coaches of all time, once said, “Discipline yourself and others won’t need to.” This wisdom rings as true today as it did in the late 1990’s when he wrote those words in his book, Wooden: A Lifetime of Observations and Reflections On and Off the Court.
The modern athlete has a host of external influences, distractions, and easier paths that can make it easy to pass off responsibility to others and not use mistakes and failures as opportunities to grow, improve, and learn. Watching Netflix all day, playing video games, and getting fast food after a workout is easier than going out and doing extra fitness, spending an extra 20 minutes to work on flexibility, or taking the time to prepare a healthy meal after a hard session.
While none of these activities is inherently bad, exchanging a better choice for a lesser one can compound and become habitual. The converse is also true. Consciously making the choice to put in extra work will also form good habits. When we get into good routines, we start to crave the outcomes, or rewards, that those routines lead to.
Many of the athletes that train at WST are striving to play at the highest level. Whether it is a Division I program or even beyond as a professional, choices rest solely on the shoulders of the athlete. The choice to eat healthier, the choice to stretch more, and the choice to get proper rest are essential habits to form in order to ascend to the next level. The extra touches and reps in a session will only go as far as the athlete’s discipline outside of training will allow.
When an athlete makes the conscious decision to remain disciplined, the sky is the limit for what they can achieve in their sport.