6 Motivational Quotes for Athletes, to Help You Stay on Track

Derek Jeter, baseball player

*This post may contain affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases.

Here are six motivational quotes for athletes from famous athletes to help encourage and inspire those reaching for their own personal goals. Top athletes are revered, looked up to and sometimes envied. They have everything. At least it seems that way. However, underneath the fame and glory is a lot of sweat, and often tears.
This article is meant to help those struggling with difficulties or defeat on the path to success. If a person is truly struggling with the difficulties of achieving their goals it is important to seek out the advice of a professional.

Key Motivational Quotes for Athletes

female athlete starting a race

The only way to prove that you’re a good sport is to lose.

Ernie Banks, Major League Baseball player for the Chicago Cubs from 1953 to 1971
It can help to view losing, not only as a part of the process of success but a valuable tool. Losing isn’t fun. Nobody likes it. However, losing helps people develop the skills it takes to persevere.
Motivational quotes for athletes like this show that learning how to lose is an important skill for anyone, regardless of the endeavor. It is also a great way to exhibit good sportsmanship. Showing a sense of humility and even good humor when coming in second, third or last helps people develop a relationship with others in the same field.

“The fight is won or lost far away from witnesses.”

Muhammad Ali, Professional boxer, World Heavyweight Champion
When it comes right down to it, the actual competition is just a small part of any activity. Whether the activity is work-related, a class in school or a sport, it is what goes on during preparation that is where the real fight is.
The more a person prepares, practices and studies their goal, the more likely they are to excel. Keep in mind, excelling does not necessarily mean winning. Every time someone goes out to participate, they are that much closer to their goal. Take a page out of Mohammad Ali’s book. Motivational quotes for athletes like these show that people should always strive to beat their own personal best. The rest will come naturally.

“There may be people who have more talent than you, but there’s no excuse for anyone to work harder than you.”

Derek Jeter, Professional baseball player for the New York Yankees
Derek Jeter, baseball player
Natural talent is rarely what it seems to the outsider. Even though winners do not get to where they did instantly, however, some may have more natural abilities. That does not mean that anyone else should just give up and go home.
Hard work can, and often does, beat out natural ability. The real champions in sports, work, school and all areas of life, are those that push through any obstacle in their way. The people who succeed are the ones that accept that they won’t always win.
The best gift anyone can give themselves is the permission to fail. Use these motivational quotes for athletes to help develop a good understanding of what it takes to succeed in any area of life. Once a person has decided that going out and trying, win or lose, is okay, they are free to do their best without fear.

“We all have dreams. But in order to make dreams come into reality, it takes an awful lot of determination, dedication, self-discipline, and effort.”

Jesse Owens, 4-time Olympic Gold Medalist 1936
Jesse Owens is arguably one of the most determined athletes ever to have competed. This example of motivational quotes from athletes highlights the fact that his path was never easy. He didn’t let that stop him, though.
He is a prime example of a person practicing what they preach. Get out there and make it happen. No matter who says it isn’t possible. No matter what stands in the way. People should prepare themselves for all road blocks. They will be there.

“Victory is in having done your best. If you’ve done your best, you’ve won.”

Bill Bowerman, Track and Field Coach of over 31 Olympic athletes, 51 All-Americans and the co-founder of Nike
Bill Bowerman on the track with athletes
Bill Bowerman is probably one of the most recognizable figures when it comes to motivational quotes for athletes. His activities with Nike have developed some of the most famous inspirational quotes of all times.
This quote really stands out, however. One of the biggest keys to success is knowing that a medal, a promotion or a paycheck does not define success. Getting up and doing what it takes to compete in any area of life is what makes people a winner.
One thing is for sure. No one who sits on their couch and complains about the unfairness of it all will ever win. It isn’t possible to win if a person doesn’t even get up and try.

“Persistence can change failure into extraordinary achievement”

Matt Biondi, three-time U.S. Olympic swimmer
The bottom line when it comes to success is: get out there and do it. Work every day on achieving the goals in mind, and get better at it each time. No one wins immediately. Not even the most naturally gifted athlete simply gets up one day and wins a race or game. It has always taken years of preparation and hard work to get where they did.
Of course, it may seem like they were an overnight success to anyone looking in. However, one of his most powerful motivational quotes for athletes proves just the opposite. People who are inspired by the success of the greats in their field would do themselves a great favor by studying the truth of what it took for those people to get where they are.
Now, after reading these motivational quotes for athletes, it’s time to get out there and do it. Remember, most of all, that it is okay to lose. Doing the best in any circumstances will always yield good results. Have a good attitude. Review each performance, attempt or struggle to see what did and didn’t work.
Using the information gained from every attempt to find ways to practice and develop will make each additional attempt better and easier. Learn from those that have succeeded in the same areas. Their struggles will likely be similar, and their methods of getting through them a good example of what to do to achieve success.
Don’t forget to take a few minutes to get involved in our online community. Share the experiences you’ve had with working toward goals. If you know any other quotes that have inspired you, we’d love to hear them as well!


Recent Posts