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Four Ways To Balance Athletic Identity

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Erica Cenci is an athlete development specialist and professional coach who works with current and former athletes as they transition throughout the various stages of their athletic careers. Cenci was Captain of the Purdue Women's Swim & Dive Team, NCAA Division I Championships Qualifier and a Big Ten Finalist. She has an ACTP certificate in Professional Coaching for Life & Work from the University of California Davis and is an Associate Certified Coach (ACC) at the International Coach Federation (ICF).

Athletic Identity (DEFINED) The degree to which an individual identifies with the athlete role and looks to others for acknowledgement of that role (Brewer, Van Raalte, & Linder, 1993). It is a type of self-schema or how an individual perceives themselves.

Here are 4 tips to help individuals balance their athletic identity, in order to recognize:


1.) Find out what you are good at and what you are interested in, besides your sport.

2.) Try new things not related to your sport and don't be afraid to be imperfect or fail.

3.) Seek a community of people who can support your development beyond just your athletic successes.

4.) Look for ways to improve your relationships, not just your performance.

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Parents and coaches can use this to help their players or kids balance their passions and become better athletes, better people.

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