Young fighters who have their eyes set on being elite sacrifice many normal adolescent experiences in order to constantly train and compete.
Indeed, very little time is left for a social life. It is all about compromise, finding that balance between school, friends, work, family and training. Sometimes you need to give up certain things. Fighters of any age have sacrifices, our young aspiring athletes give up social outings, sleep overs and parties. However, they see this as part of achieving their ultimate goal – to become an elite, the top level athlete.
Jess Seery of Bullsbrook in WA shows a high level of commitment to her Muaythai training.
She catches the bus directly from school to the gym, where she completes her homework. She trains five days a week and maintains good grades at school. Seery’s friends never completely understand why she trains as hard as she does. While they are snuggled on the couch playing games she opts to train. However, her achievements have inspired some of them to also take up the sport.
“I miss out on sleep overs with pizza and movie nights with my friends,” says Seery.
She is one of many athletes who shows dedication to her chosen sport. Whether our additional commitments are work or school, they can often demand a large amount of time.
“Sometimes I have to choose between doing what I love, and being responsible by choosing school”.
Driven by the direct result of putting in the hard work, Seery feels that when she has lost, it has been as a result of not giving it her all.
Trainers and parents should value the enjoyment and the process rather than the destination.
In today’s society it is not only parents placing all kinds of pressures on their children to succeed, but coaches, friends and more importantly ourselves. Teenage girls are already going through bodily changes, causing hormones and emotions to be heightened. Add a loss to the mix and you have a frazzled young girl.
Dealing with a loss is a process in itself. You need to allow yourself to go through it in order to get back to the drawing board and move forward.
Seery admits that sometimes she struggles with commitment getting back into the gym after a loss.
Family support assists in reassuring young athletes during their endeavors and the sacrifices made along the way.
Seery is part of a family who all train muaythai. She is most excited about her sister’s involvement. “I can’t wait to see her in the ring one day,” she says.
Seery faced a defeated against Maddie Duiker in July. Nevertheless she certainly looks to be victorious in her next bout. She steps into the ring with Kaelee Mallard on November 19 in Perth.
It is very important for athletes to have positive role models. With fighting sports we have many great elite female athletes for our youth fighters to look up to.
My tip for the day, don’t assume that you will have tomorrow. Work today!