Being Great is About More Than Just Having Style

EUGENE, OR - MAY 30: Maggie Vessey runs the 800m during day 1 of the IAAF Diamond League Nike Prefontaine Classic on May 30, 2014 at the Hayward Field in Eugene, Oregon. (Photo by Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images)

I don’t know if the trend started with NCAA schools like Oregon having a million different uniforms, but it created a change for the worst. The change that has worked its way around all levels of sports is athletes that care more about style than performance.

I have never seen so many athletes looking good in my life. You have parents who look to buy their kids the hottest gear before even teaching them the fundamentals of the sport. It has become about the shoes, the sleeves, the visors, which brand you are rocking and less about technique and being good.

A father had contacted us about joining Speed Kills and said money was tight. Which is fine, but then he went on to ask us if we had gear with the AC logos on it. We don’t have any, but that is just proof of my point.

If there is a choice between looking good and being good, most choose to look good first. The underlying problem here is that the best way to look good as an athlete is by being good at your sport.

No Respect for The Game

The problem with only being an athlete focus on the flash is that you completely miss the substance of being an athlete. You don’t know or care about anything that has come before you, and it is a damn shame. True love for any craft means looking forward to the future but also respecting the past.

Those who paved the way for sports did not have fancy techniques or the most beautiful uniforms. It was all about doing the fundamentals well. The fundamentals don’t make the highlight reels, but they build the backbone of the sports we love.

One of the best things you can do to get away from the flash goes back in time and understand the greats who have come before you. It is a disgrace that there are basketball players who wear Jordans and don’t even know who MJ is.

They have not taken the time to watch his old games and understand his mentality. You’re missing out! Talk with your parents an grandparents about who they grew up watching and hearing about. You will get stories about legends you have never even heard of.

Look Good Feel Good Then Look Like a Clown

A lot of athletes preach that they have to look good to feel good, if they feel good they play that way. I am not arguing this. The way we dress can change how we feel about ourselves. If we want to feel good about ourselves, we need to act the role. This belief only goes so far though otherwise, the best-dressed athletes would always be the best ones.

What you end up seeing a lot now is athletes who look good, but their skills are subpar. They go on the field, and everyone expects a beast, and they are barely a puppy.

You end up looking like a clown because it is obvious that you spent more time working on your outfit then your actual game. What a shame!

Make the nice gear a reward for your grind. The work always comes before the success. If you put in adequate amounts of work and feel that you should be able to reward yourself with some gear that is one thing, but the gear should never just come easy.

When you know you want to look good but you’re not sure if you deserve, that is the hunger that will drive you to be better every day.

Skills Pay The Bills to Get The Gear

One thing top athletes always have to remember is not to get caught up in the spotlight and the commercials and stuff. The reason is that their skills are what got them to that position. If their abilities go away, so will the spotlight, money, and fame. Now you may not be a famous athlete, but the lessons apply to you as well.

If you want the spotlight, the scholarships, and the opportunities, you need to excel as an athlete. It is not just about looking good; you need actually to perform like the best. When you do this all of the other things will come your way. When you are good at what you do you are rewarded for it.

If you act good at what you do, you may get an opportunity here and there, but that will never last. You will eventually be found out for who you are, and that is a person with more style than skill.

What To Do From Here

Have you been slapped in the face and you now realize you are all sizzle and no shake? Well here are some things you can do to fix the situation.

  1. Set milestones for goals you want to achieve
  2. Give yourself rewards for those milestones (for example I won’t wear the all white cleats until I do this)
  3. Find someone to do it with you, so you have more accountability
  4. Tell your parents about it
  5. Stick to it no matter what
  6. Feel good when you achieve your goals

It may sound stupid, but if you are the type of person who buys something new and wears it home, making yourself hold off from doing that will be a huge motivator for you. Use that motivation to your advantage!

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