Life Lessons From Basketball

Ryan C Heffernan: Life Lessons from Basketball

Many people I talk to always wonder, “Why basketball?” For some people, basketball (or sports in general) is very hard to understand. For others, like myself, the game brings critical life values off the court. Basketball is a sport that is revolved around determination, teamwork, and personal development that leads to overall success. These are the reasons why I chose to compare the game of basketball to success.


  • Personal Development


Basketball is a great sport for personal and professional development. In the game, you learn how to determine your goals and the strategies you will use to reach them. Hard work and long hours of practice are crucial to learning to play well on the court. There will be obstacles that you and your team will have to hurdle over. Basketball teaches you that it’s okay to lose a game, as long as you put hard work and determination into it. This will push you to get back on your feet and try again. These skills are important to apply in life challenges and will push you towards your goals. Basketball allows you to learn and apply the skills of discipline and determination not just on the court, but in real life as well.


  • Team Work


Playing basketball requires combined effort through multiple people. In a team, everyone has their own role that they must practice in order to contribute to the team. This creates value to the whole team, while learning how to manage your role within a team. In the real world, jobs and organizations require some type of team work. The team-work skills that are learned in the game can effectively be applied to team-work in the workplace.  Everyone has their own role and must manage it in order to reach the overall end goal of the team. Working together creates respect for everyone on the team. Respect is a critical aspect of teamwork so that everyone can reach the same end goal. A game can’t be won without everyone working together.


  • Strategize for Success


Basketball isn’t just a game, it’s an art. The game requires players to determine the team’s goal, but also planning strategies that will help reach that goal. Players must be organized and understand their roles within the team. They must also learn to plan and prepare for their goal through individual and team practice. Basketball allows players to become leaders and solve problems within the game. Through these skills, the game teaches players the planning process of reaching goals, which can then be applied outside of the court.

“You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.” As a basketball player, it is easy to apprehend this quote and apply it to our personal lives. This quote reminds us, that no matter whether or not we play basketball, if you don’t try something you’ve always wanted to do, you’ll never know if you could have succeeded. In basketball, if you miss a shot, you always have an opportunity to try again. The same goes for real-life instances.