“It’s ok to be nervous before a game. If you are nervous, it shows you care.”
Trying Out For Competitive Teams: Part 2
Trying out for a competitive team, be it your local community team, a travel team, or a national team, is a stressful experience. It goes against the norms of teamwork, support, and playing for more than yourself. It’s the one moment on a team when you are literally in it for just you.
Checklist before tryouts:
a. List reasons why you feel physically, technically (individual skill), tactically (strategy), and mentally prepared for the tryout.
b. And in the same areas, why you don’t feel prepared as well.
c. Based on your strengths and weaknesses, you can now go into the tryout knowing how to hold your own, and how your strengths and weaknesses can help and hurt you. You may find that your weaknesses need improving but they didn’t handicap you. You may also find that your strengths may need fine tuning because athletes were able to counter the best parts of your game.
d. Understand the mission and vision of the team. Are you trying out for a national team where winning is more important or are you trying out for a developmental team that stresses equal playing time?
Figure out which type of team is best for you right now.
Make an informed decision when answering this. Talk to your coaches and parents that include “a” and “b.” And in the end, trust your gut/intuition.
e. See tryouts through the lens of the coaches and evaluators. They are trying to best evaluate everyone not just one or two people. I.e., in a 20 minute scrimmage with 20 people per team, a coach is lucky to get 1min to evaluate one or two athletes at a time.
Also, it doesn't take long to understand what kind of coaches will be evaluating you. So take a moment to identify this as well.
Some examples of Coaches:
i. The Director, the coach that is there to tell you to just do it a certain way and scream out directions.
ii. The Dude, they are just there to hangout, they don't give advice, they don't direct, they are just there to hangout with the coaches and give the occasional high-five to players.
iii. The Advisor, they are encouragers and there to give advice. They engage with the players and show genuine care and compassion.
iv. Stern Face, this coach is very stoic, they don't say anything or have very little to say, they just watch the athletes perform. You see them watching and it can be intimidating.
f. It’s not as easy as the best athletes getting chosen and the worst get cut. Coaches are looking for complimentary players to balance the roster and are looking for the athletes who will best help the team be successful.
Remember play to your strengths and play with effort.
Just because you didn’t get picked for the team doesn’t make you are a bad athlete. Chances are, that you weren’t the right fit for that team.
g. As athletes ask questions before and after tryouts. You can learn what the coaches are looking for by talking to them before a tryout. If you get cut, ask for advice on areas to strengthen. If you made the team, talk with coaches on the role you will play on the team.
In the end, success and failure are part of the sports experience. As you get to the higher levels and more competitive programs, it gets even tougher. Embrace the moment, meet the challenge, learn from experience, and keep striving to be the best version of yourself!
Tune in tomorrow for more information and tips for successfully competing in tryouts, and click ❤️❤️and tag 🏷