Athletes from all sports always get TRAPPED by being good at something early! Take the best athlete in Football. He starts playing peewee football and the coach makes him the Quarterback and just lets him take off every play because no one he plays against can match his speed or agility. That kid probably gets 5 touchdowns a game in Peewee and heck maybe he does it in high school too! But now he is off to college or even the NFL and all’s he ever had to do was run the ball, and now he is forced to pass and really read defenses because if he were to take off running every time he would probably get blasted and get sidelined. Well he never learned how to pass with pin point accuracy or read defenses because he never had to. Guess what, now he is sidelined anyway!
What happened here?
The Athletic trap happened!
Here is a story of how this “Athletic trap” works;
I personally am a very average athlete (I trained my entire life to just barely dunk, and some days I can’t even do that), but I had a friend on my high school basketball team that was one of the best athletes I have ever seen. As a freshmen he was dunking with ease and he could get a defensive rebound at one end and score at the other end in under 4 seconds (I can barely get down the court period in 4 seconds and he was scoring on defenses). Yet, for some reason he never went on to play college basketball and I did. Confusing right?!?! well not really! You see my friend never developed any further because he could “GET BY” with his athletic ability. He essentially got lazy and complacent. I on the other hand could not rely on my athletic ability so I developed my skills to the best of my ability. The absence of athletic ability sometimes leads to superior work ethic. However, if you have the athletic ability AND the Work Ethic…well… Have you ever heard of Kobe Bryant?!?!
Moral of the story; Just because your athletic does not mean you can ignore the skill, find something you are not good at and become good at it! No matter how fast you are, there is someone faster. that goes for strength, agility, skills and everything else. “There is always someone better than you!” Do not fall into the “Athletic Trap!” But, hey don’t take it from me, take it from Durant.
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I heard Michael Jordan was cut from his high school basketball tean his freshman year. True? I don’t know but if he was. …well this proves your point. I know many high school athletes who looked awesome on the court but could never go any further. Why? Because they thought they were it and when they tried to go farther. ..without any training. ..they were astounded that they weren’t the best. There is always someone better.
Great post, the athletic trap is a far too common story. It’s easy to coast through lower levels of competition relying on pure athletic skills. It’s when you get to the higher levels and everyone is just as athletic as you are that you starto to regret not developing your other skills.