Tuesday, December 18, 2012

The 3 Factors of Success

Recently I was asked the question, "What characteristics/factors would you say are most important in young skiers to help them have success in skiing in the long term."

1) Perseverance: Many skiers that have been injured know a lot about this characteristic, as do all skiers. I don't think that a skier can become successful without this trait. There are so many factors that you have to persevere through in the world of skiing. I had to work through a lot to reach where I am today, and the struggles are far from over. I think that it is important to endure these struggles, learn from them and come out on the other side.
Sometimes it's okay to cry (although less often in my case would be better). 

 In every day whether good or bad, there is a lesson. A lesson of what to try, what to try again, or what to never allow yourself to do again. I don't want to be negative, however I feel the need to be realistic. Every athlete, whether young or mature, will struggle, and it is important to live through these struggle, never give up and learn. 


2) Hard Work: I don't know many skiers that don't work as hard as they can. I try to do everything I can to be the best that I can be. 

Fall down... but make sure you get back up. 
I watch video, I visualize, I train hard, even when I feel I can no longer train any more, I answer my emails, I fill out my training forms, I talk to a sports psych, but most importantly I try to learn.
I keep my eyes, ears and mind open to whatever tid bits come my way, whether they are about the new skis, how the rules work, what the new helmets are made out of, how to eat properly. etc.


3) Have Fun: Most importantly, have fun. I honestly cannot stress this enough. At a young age, having fun is easier to do. You are surrounded by family, friends, coaches and success. I disagree with pushing a child to the point that they are no longer loving what they are doing. Of course, I agree with tough love, hard work, pushing through pain, pushing past limits, however when an athlete finishes day after day with more frowns than smiles, they will not continue. They might ski for a few more years, but no matter how good they are, this will be a limiting factor. 
Now it is harder to have fun, stakes are high, limits are pushed, bodies are pushed and we have less people to turn to. However, countless races prove to me that I do well when I have a smile on my face knowing that I get to be the only person on the course, pushing the line as far as I can and skiing the way I am able to. Now my days are filled with hard work, dedication and fun. I know that I need this aspect in my skiing. 
(An amazing ending to a bad day.) 

I think a lot, I train a lot, and I need time to balance this out. I take it seriously when I don't do well. I get upset when I don't finish, but after that day is done I do something that I enjoy. 

I take a free run with my music blaring (I know, frowned upon), I dance on the chair, I talk to a friend, I read a book, or a let it go and know that the next day will be better.

1 comment:

  1. Erin,
    What a great reflection. Not sure if this question is from the meeting in Pano with the U16 NCOST athletes - if it was I'm glad that we helped spark such a wonderful post, if not great post none the less. The team is very supportive of you and they were extremely receptive to the Q&A your teammates and you so kindly volunteered your time for. It was great to hear LIVE how excited you were for your Race in ARE and then watch you compete and come down with an excellent result. Keep up the great work. As you have said it is definitely worth it for the view from the podium. Merry Christmas and All the best to you in 2013. Enjoy the time with your "on the road family". Your fans in Ottawa wish you the best.

    Katrina Follis
    (Kat)
    U16 NCOST Coach

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