Community Talks! Vol. 1, ep. 2
Written by: Mariana Cañavera H.
I must confess: I have been a sports fan since I was little, probably more exactly since I joined my first basketball team at age 7. From that point in my life, I didn’t know all the repercussions team sports could have in one’s life. From playing basketball, football, volleyball, ultimate frisbee, and even field hockey, these sports taught me more about myself and others than any other social/recreational activity. Perhaps, I dare to say, team sports are not just about playing on a team but recognizing yourself within it, and what role you play there.
If you have ever played any team sports, you probably will identify with some of the following things I learned from them. If you are not a team sports person or even if you do not like playing sports at all, I hope you find this insightful and why not inspiring to start practicing a team sport. Here we go!
- You know how to support others and allow others to support you
Every team sport has different player positions according to different aptitudes, skills, strengths, and weaknesses someone has. This allows us to learn more about ourselves but also identify others’ abilities, and how we can support each other to improve individually and most importantly as a team. It is all about vulnerability and trust between each team member.
- It is all about camaraderie
You spend so much time together with your teammates that you develop a close way of communicating because you know each other so well. During games and outside the field, you can count on your teammates. You start acting like a pack of wolves; you recognize the movements and where you can find your teammate to complete the next play. When you win or when you lose, you feel it as a group. It is not a matter of who did more or who did less, you are in this together.
- You become more empathetic
Sports can be passionate, and emotions can rise all the way. As a team player, you start recognizing your teammates' emotions and aptitudes before, during, and after the games. Empathy is one of those skills you develop as you learn to understand how and when to interact with your teammates in order to achieve the goal of winning together.
Furthermore, empathy is developed mostly in the hard times, whenever anyone from the team suffers an injury or loses the winning point, it is felt by all teammates. Recovery periods can be hard, not only for the player who suffered it but for all. Everyone feels the others’ pain and they do whatever they can to make the player feel better and to keep going.
- Resilience, that is the game
One of the most beautiful truths in sports is that no game is the same as another. Yes, as a player you confront uncertainty, and you must adapt smartly and fast. Anything can happen anytime, and it is more important the way you react and change strategy than if you keep playing the same way. And well, as in sports as in life, the ones who survive are those who adapt.
- You are stronger and smarter together
What would it be like if those prodigious athletes were not surrounded by a team that understands and uses their abilities at its best? In most cases, they will just be a player carrying a team, and not achieving their potential. Yes, even the best ones need a team, because a team will help every player to become stronger and play smarter. Your teammates and your coach will always push you to be better, to improve your skills, and to perceive what you have probably haven’t seen. Together as one! (As we say here in inriver)
All in all, these teachings are intertwined, because as humans we need each other, therefore I will say there is no better feeling than belonging to a team.
Are you a team player? What are your thoughts? 🤔
Thanks, Mariana, this is food for thought! Teams, and teamwork does bring the best in us, doesn't it?
Teamwork fosters strategic thinking, and problem-solving, because the team members can contribute with different examples, varying viewpoints, different levels of knowledge. In this sense, inriver's Community breathes the spirit of teams and teamwork in that we learn with and from one another.2
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