3 keys to success and helpful tips for after you’ve committed
Committing to playing a sport at the college level is a significant accomplishment and cause for celebration. Even after you’ve committed, though, there is still work to be done. FieldLevel has compiled three keys to success for the post-recruitment transition period, along with some helpful tips to stay on track.
1. Stay Healthy
Just because you’ve committed to a college doesn’t mean you can stop taking care of your body. It’s essential to stay in shape, especially in the spring and summer leading up to college. You will be spending lots of time in college keeping up with the physical demands of being a student-athlete, which will only be harder to do if unprepared.
As a part of this, you must keep practicing and improving in your sport. You want to put your best foot forward as soon as you step onto campus, and one of the best ways to ensure you do that is to practice. Your coaches will be an excellent resource for you during this time, as they can help develop a training plan or suggest areas that you can improve upon in practice. Additionally, proper rest, hydration, and nutrition will help you stay mentally and physically fit. Utah State University has put together a very helpful nutrition guide for high school athletes.
- Buy a reusable water bottle to stay hydrated throughout the day.
- Make time to do things you love.
- Schedule times to eat balanced meals during busy days, so you don’t lose energy or muscle.
- Move your body every day — whether that’s playing your sport, stretching, going for a walk, or anything else to keep the blood pumping.
- Keep your energy levels up by getting enough sleep every night.
After you’ve committed to a college, you should communicate your decision to a variety of people. First, talk to college coaches you were in contact with at other schools to thank them for their time and let them know you have committed elsewhere. Alerting them is helpful for their sake, so they don’t spend time reaching out to you when you’ve already committed. You should also thank your current coaches and counselors for helping you throughout the process — remember that your success is their success!
It would help if you also put some effort into connecting with your new teammates and making friends with them. You will be spending a lot of time with them throughout your college career, so getting to know them better ahead of time will make your transition to campus much smoother and potentially less awkward. The same applies to college coaches, trainers, counselors — reach out to them and introduce yourself to establish a trusting relationship.
Finally, some athletes like to announce their commitments on social media. Doing so is a great way to showcase your hard work and tell people that you are proud of this significant accomplishment. Before you do this, however, review everything on your social media pages and ensure that your content is appropriate. First impressions are so important that people’s first impression of you will often be from your social media pages — especially your coaches and teammates. Additionally, if you’re announcing your commitment to a college, you must recognize that you will be representing something much bigger than yourself, and what you post matters. For more advice about the best practices for social media, you can read our article, “Top 5 Mistakes Athletes Make on Social Media.”
3. Maintain a Balance
As a student-athlete, you’ve had experience balancing your academics, sport, social life, family time, and other responsibilities. Even after being recruited, it’s important to maintain this balance and keep up with everything you still need to do. Time management is an instrumental skill to have here, as it will help ensure everything gets done and keep your stress levels down. It’s also critical for you to remember that what works for you may not work for someone else, so try and strike a balance that will ensure you are successful.
- Use a digital or physical planner to keep track of deadlines and block off time to eat, move your body, practice your sport, do homework, and any other responsibilities.
- Take at least one rest day per week to give your body proper time to recover.
- Try to be a few days ahead of your schoolwork to lessen your chances of stressing about a big deadline at the last minute.
- Prioritize spending time with your friends and family.
- Be present in whatever you’re doing.
If you have any questions about how to stay successful once you have committed, the FieldLevel team is here to help you and support you. If there’s anything we can do, please contact us in one of the following ways:
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