Life Lessons to Learn From Football

Positive Characteristics in Football Everyone Can Appreciate

John Martinez Pavliga/Flickr/CC BY 2.0

Most parents have hopes and dreams for their children with thoughts of their child pursuing a fruitful career. The statistics show that most children will not be professional football players, but there are several life lessons that the game of football can help instill for future generations.

Everyone can appreciate the positive characteristics learned through playing football, like teamwork, discipline, perseverance, goal setting and the rush of success.

Teamwork

Football requires a unique brand of teamwork. When you are a part of a football team, sometimes with up to 90 other players, understanding your role and that of your teammates is critical. Trusting teammates to do their job is also of utmost importance. All teammates count, including players on the second and third string. The emotional ups and downs that a team may experience help to build trust over time.

Discipline

Football requires discipline and a good work ethic. A player must endure scrutiny and constant evaluation. From high school up, every move in practice and games is evaluated by coaches and fellow players through video playback. Constant reevaluation fosters growth and accountability.

Parents naturally evaluate their children since birth, making sure milestones are reached and schoolwork is up to snuff. On a team, it helps to have other mentors and friends give evaluations.

As adults, if we hope to improve and grow, we have to take responsibility for that growth, and get help from others when necessary.

Perseverance

Football provides a variety of challenges that will test and help to build a player's perseverance. Common pitfalls like losing a big game, not making first string or missing a play that results in a score for the other team are much like life, roadblocks that are inevitable.

Even physical challenges, such as not having enough strength or not being as fast or as good at catching a ball, may even tempt a person to quit.

Football teaches perseverance, sticking with it even while it is tough, and the promise that there can be a giant payoff in the end. It helps to have a team, mentor or support system, to bring a person through the rough patches.

Goal Setting

In football, stats are recorded. Where there is measurement, there is a chance to set goals for improvement. Based on stats, a player can set a goal to get a 40-yard dash down to a certain time or predetermine a number of catches to make. There are a number of team-oriented goals as well, which will help a player be accountable for achieving their expectations as part of the team.

Goal setting is a great tool for everyone. Goals help us grow and improve. Playing football or any sport for that matter can help a person get started with good goal setting habits.

A High You Can Not Buy

Football is “a high you can’t buy.” Playing the game can give players a huge adrenaline rush. There is great value in throwing all you have into a game with your teammates. And, when there is success, even for one play, it is a moving experience.

Football teaches a valuable lesson that there are productive ways to pursue adventure and natural, healthy highs in life. There are so many stories about children being kept out of trouble and grounded by the camaraderie and mentorship through football or another sport.

Everyone may not play football, but we can all appreciate the value found in football. Whether you are a parent helping a child or an adult working with a team of coworkers, like in football, the end result is the same. If we work hard, mentor each other, persevere through the tough times, we just may achieve our goals in life.