We often look to athletes for advice, since they have demonstrated what it means to achieve greatness. They are often masters of focus, skill, and accomplishment. Here are some famous quotes from athletes to inspire you!

Famous quotes from athletes:

“Set your goals high, and don’t stop till you get there.”  – Bo Jackson

“When you’ve got something to prove, there’s nothing greater than a challenge.”  – Terry Bradshaw

“The principle is competing against yourself. It’s about self-improvement, about being better than you were the day before.” – Steve Young

“You have to expect things of yourself before you can do them.” – Michael Jordan

“Age is no barrier. It’s a limitation you put on your mind.” – Jackie Joyner-Kersee

“The sky has no limits. Neither should you.” –  Usain Bolt

“Make sure your worst enemy doesn’t live between your own two ears.” – Laird Hamilton

“Do you know what my favorite part of the game is? The opportunity to play.” – Mike Singletary

“If you fail to prepare, you’re prepared to fail.” – Mark Spitz

“Continuous effort — not strength or intelligence — is the key to unlocking our potential.” – Liane Cardes

“I’ve learned that something constructive comes from every defeat.” – Tom Landry

“Persistence can change failure into extraordinary achievement.” – Marv Levy

“The more difficult the victory, the greater the happiness in winning.”  – Pele

“Nobody who ever gave his best regretted it.” – George Halas

These quotes can be broken down into at least one of these five categories:

1. Set and believe that you can accomplish your goals.

A goal without an end date is just a dream. Dreams are beautiful things, but they remain abstract.

Tiana’s father, from Disney’s The Princess and The Frog says, “Yes, you wish and you dream with all your little heart. But you remember, Tiana, that old star can only take you part of the way. You got to help him with some hard work of your own. And then… Yeah, you can do anything you set your mind to.”

Most schools often display the motto of, “Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you’ll land among the stars.”

Small goals are great for building the habit and training yourself to accomplish the bigger ones, but having big goals allows you to keep pushing and growing.

2. Know that the only limit is your mind and be kind to yourself.

While my talents lie more on the creative side, I have often heard people say things like, “I wish I could learn to sing as you do, but I can’t,” and it makes me frustrated.

I currently have a university degree in classical singing, but I only started singing when I was sixteen. I was unable to sing with vibrato (the sound of operatic singing) until I was 22 and in the final year of my undergraduate program! When I started, I couldn’t sing on pitch, and even my parents struggled to say nice things about my singing.

Yet, I eventually achieved my personal goal of being one of the main roles in a full-length opera when I was 23!

The other side to creating limits on yourself is that you must be kind to yourself, too. Have you been caught berating yourself, when if someone directed that towards your best friend, you wouldn’t stand for it? You are human and will make mistakes, and you are WONDERFUL for it. If that’s difficult for you to believe, take some time to reflect on why that is.

3. Talent is great, but determination and a solid growth mindset are even greater.

Think of the story about the tortoise and the hare. The hare starts running incredibly fast, but because of his head start, he believes he has enough time for a nap in the middle of the race. In the end, the persistent tortoise ends up walking right past the sleeping hare to win the race.

Reflect on a real-life example, where you watched someone who wasn’t naturally talented come to exceed, simply by hard work and determination. Yet, there is nothing is stopping you from doing the same.

4. Failure is not bad, but rather a learning opportunity.

My favourite story about persistence and succeeding past failure comes from Walt Disney.

He had his original character- Oswald the Lucky Rabbit- stolen from him and he was verging on bankruptcy. No one believed that he could make a feature-length cartoon that people would sit through. The banks refused to lend him money to create Disneyland and the opening day was a disaster.

Yet, his name is still known worldwide, even though he passed away more than sixty years ago.

When you fail, pick yourself up again, and you can learn and adapt. Each failure is a meaningful experience if you can change your mindset to see it as such.

5. Do your best, regardless.

A few years ago, I wanted to perform in Disney parks. I envisioned myself on a parade float, twirling around and blowing kisses to the people watching. I found the location of the auditions, got on the plane, lost my luggage, and showed up early in my day-old clothes.

Looking around, I was surrounded by beautiful dancers and actors who were all competing with me for the same role it was incredibly daunting, but I poured all my heart into it! Unfortunately, I wasn’t one of the ones selected. I was heartbroken, but I was incredibly proud of myself for doing my best at that time.

Reflect on all the times you tried your best, and I bet you’re proud of those moments, too, regardless of the outcome! 😊

If you are an athlete who wants to improve your flexibility and recovery time, check out our blog about WeStretch’s stretches for athletes.

Ultimately, one of our goals here at WeStretch is to inspire YOU.

You stretch on/ off for a week, for 5 minutes at a time.

On the days you stretch, you feel better and realize there is a lack of pain and your body feels wonderful.

When you begin consistently stretching for 10 minutes a day, you will notice a boost in your energy levels and that your sleep is better.

At this point, you may decide to get more seriously into exercise, and you aren’t as daunted by the prospect as before.

On the flip side, you might feel that stretching is enough, but you’ll feel great and require fewer physical treatments. You will have also formed a habit and shown yourself that you are capable and can achieve whatever you put your mind to.

Find what inspires you and just go for it. All of these athletes started out as ordinary people who achieved greatness. What is stopping you from doing the same?

Written by Kayla Willsey

Updated May 19, 2021