Make or Break, Try Outs

Everyone knows the general details to performing at your highest level during tryouts, but there are definitely some key aspects that usually go over athletes heads. I have interviewed coaches and an athlete to be able to compare their thoughts, and also add my own point of view.

Every athlete is constantly trying to find out that particular detail that the coaches need from their players, so here it is “Your tryout guide for all future sports”

Third season tryouts took place last week for Softball, Track and Field, Badminton, and Golf. Tons of athletes came out to play, and show the coaches their potential and ability. Each player trying to express that special skill that they know the coaches will take interest in. But how does a coach deal with these hopefuls, what do they look for, and how do they make their cuts? Tryouts always seem to be the most nerve wracking part of sport seasons, it’s make or break. We all know the usual aspects of a player that coaches look for, the actual ability, positive attitude and the occasional signs of leadership. All these details make up a huge amount of your chance in making a team, but there are other small details.

All coaches tell us to come to practice with a smile, to “have fun out there!” That is of course, the expectation. But what happens when players are unable to express that profound happiness when at practice ? What could a negative attitude possible do to a team ? isn’t our athletic ability enough ? Every athlete finds themselves asking this questions when they’re being confronted by one of the coaches about their attitude. Attitude is just a mental detail, it could have no possible relation to our teams physical competence. Mrs. Casey states “Bad attitude can hurt an athlete’s chances because it directly relates to their coachability and team dynamic!” Bad attitude can sway your teammates to either join your mood, or ruin their relationship with you. Both of these outcomes are detrimental to the team. Yes, attitude is a mentality issue, yet like all emotional problems, these can easily lead to affecting the physical outcome. Your mental well being and ability to just enjoy the game can remove stress and increase the team’s chemistry, which ultimately increases the bond that players have. Coach Tuk mentions the importance of having an open mind when playing sports “ Athletes need to open their mind to learn and try things that will help them win.” An open mind leads to an athlete being able to learn new skills and take advantage of their new found ability. Susanna ‘18, a student athlete, who is currently trying out for track believes that a player’s want and willingness to strive for greatness also impresses coaches. “If people have dedication and they set high goals for themselves, they work really really hard to meet those goals and make themselves and their coaches proud” Of course at the end of the day your athletic ability is the deciding factor, but your growth as an athlete can easily be stunted by your mentality.

Coaches sometimes have very difficult times deciding who is going to be the last 1 or 2 cuts, but at the end, sin must be committed. What do coaches look for when they make these final cuts ? What is the deciding factor ? Mrs Casey points out past performance, commitment in tryouts and  availability during the season.  The first two statements are clear, yet your availability during a season seems to go over some students head. The hassle of juggling sports and work, or sports and other activities can be overwhelming, and how a student is able to deal with this is essential to their chances of making a team. Of course your academics comes first, but having the organization and awareness to keep both athletics and academics on track is an ability that can come very handy in the future. At the end of the day, after all the struggle, from all the pressure out comes a diamond, because with being able to juggle both heavy items you build strong character and potential.

Ultimately you don’t decide your fate, but what you do in the lead up to judgement day is in your control. Always take everything into account, not just your skill and ability, because the small things fill the missing pieces in players, and help you make that last spot. Keep your head up and keep striving, even if you can’t match the athletic prowess that some kids express, you can beat them in hard work. Because when all said is done, hard work beats talent when talent fails to work hard.