Football isn’t just about the wins and the losses, hardships and triumphs, and successes and failures – it’s the people and the life lessons from the football field that make the most significant difference in the life of the players and coaches. At the end of the day, football is so much more than the game itself.
What Football Teaches On & Off the Field
- Dedication: Football requires dedication from players, coaches, and everyone involved. For the players, it requires a commitment to attend practices and games even when they conflict with high school events. For the coaches and their families, football isn’t just a sport – it’s a lifestyle that requires dedication from the coach’s wife and kids as well. This life lesson is brought to future jobs, families, and opportunities.
- Sacrifices: Much like dedication, the players and coaches make sacrifices throughout the year to show up every day for football games and practices. Whether it’s the players choosing football above high school dances or social events, players’ families making the financial commitment, or coaches and their families trading family time for football time, the sacrifices made show how much someone is willing to do for something they love.
- Teamwork: Without working together as players and coaches, the team isn’t going to be successful on or off the field. This idea of teamwork permeates all aspects of life and provides a valuable lesson of what can be achieved when working together.
- Communication: Learning how to properly communicate your wants, needs, feelings, and desires is not only important on the football field but an essential part of life in general. Through good times and bad times, learning effective communication skills is vital to being a functional adult.
- Hard work: As much as we would hope, life doesn’t come easy, and those who aren’t willing to work hard face an uphill battle in life. Much like working hard to win the next game or powering through a particularly difficult practice, hard work is pivotal to achieving wins on the field and success in life.
- Discipline: Knowing when not to say anything, understanding and doing your position, and staying in control are excellent skills to know for college, future jobs, and relationships. Staying disciplined on the field during practices and games is a worthwhile life lesson for the future roles and responsibilities in your life.
- Perseverance: Life isn’t all sunshine, rainbows, and butterflies – it will get tough, and you will get frustrated. A losing season one year might help result in a winning season the following year. But when players and coaches continue pursuing that perfect season, successfully run that difficult play, or overcome any difficulty through hard work, it’s a testament to persistence in life. College won’t be easy, jobs will have tough days, and relationships take work – something that all require perseverance and continued dedication!
- Handling failure (and success): While we all wish life and sports were only filled with wins and successes, the reality is that failure is just as important a part of the game as all the wins. It’s not just facing failure head-on that’s important – it’s how failure is handled and how players and coaches react to it. Life is full of wins and losses, and knowing how to handle both for a more positive outcome and experience is important.
- Leadership: Being a leader means supporting and encouraging the team in good times and bad times, showing empathy and tough love when needed, and being a role model for those around you. Leaders come in all shapes and sizes, and the skills required to become a leader are invaluable in all aspects of life.
Whether you’re a player, coach, or part of a coaching family, there are many life lessons to be learned on and off the field.