2016 is an entirely new year for the whole planet, and there is no better time for self-
improvement than the start of it! Many such “new year’s resolutions” revolve around having more patience for others and improving one’s own mental wellbeing, but there’s no reason a new year’s resolution cannot involve sports! Like virtually any other facet of daily life, an individual’s sporting knowledge and prowess can always be improved. The goal of resolving to either start taking sports seriously (or, for current sports savants, get better at sports) is to enhance one’s mental state – his/her overall knowledge and passion for competitive sporting activities. This can be done through a combination of the following
- Develop Physical and Mental Exercise as a Priority
Success at any sport can be narrowed down to 2 things: physical fitness and mental vigor. After all, a sport is a competitive activity, and such activities can only test the body or mind of any competitor. The stronger, faster, and more resilient a person’s body is, the better it will statistically perform in game time. The healthier, clearer, and better-focused a person’s mind is, the higher the chance of them out-strategizing and subverting their opponents. Most importantly, while results like these can be achieved for any specific sport simply by drilling that particular sport, focusing broadly on fitness and mental health creates versatility and prepares an individual for a wide variety of activities, rather than just one or two. Furthermore, a body and a mind that has been conditioned into health will make for a better lifestyle overall, both during and outside of sports!
Beyond the above, becoming better at individual forms of sport all depend on the time one is willing to invest in learning that sport; their success is also highly dependent on how genetically gifted he/she is for said sport. For example, in the realm of fencing, long limbs and a slim torso frame are genetic advantages for competitors, as they will be able to tag opponents from a greater distance and be harder to legitimately strike themselves. In basketball, it is no question that height and agility rule the field. Thus, in a high-stakes competitive state of mind, someone would benefit from specializing in a sport and playstyle that empowers his/her strengths and limits weaknesses. Note, however, that specialization is not nearly as pressing in a recreational environment, where individuals should be encouraged to pursue a sport that they find enjoyable above all else.
- Find Other Outlets of Involvement!
So, you like American football, do you? You’re physically and mentally complete, are you? And you play it every chance you get? Do not let your involvement in football stop there! If a sport truly becomes one’s passion, there are other opportunities to become immersed in that activity. Most people who play a sport, competitively or recreationally, are already aware of and participate regularly in these opportunities. Returning to the case of the football enthusiast, he/she may not only play football, but also study football rules and regulations, watch the NFL, and seek out opportunities to get involved in football among the local community. Cultivating this degree of commitment will not only complete one’s passion, but also enhance their appreciation, understanding, and enjoyment of the sport.
- Just Play!
After setting up a plan to get one’s body and mind into shape, deciding on a sport and playstyle in which to specialize, and seeking other opportunities of involvement in that sport, all that remains is to just play! Enjoy partaking in that sport, sharing it with others, and bettering yourself competitively, recreationally, and idealistically. The road to reach such a point may be long and rough, but the year is fresh, and dedication leads to success!