10 Things Your Kids Can Learn From These Basketball Pros

Basketball pros like LeBron James, Michael Jordan and Yao Ming can teach your kids a wealth of life lessons. Here are some of them.

If your child is an aspiring basketball player, you should encourage him/her to read up about their favourite basketball legends. There’s so much to learn from these inspirational people – not just with regards to their dribbling, passing and shooting skills, but also when it comes to life.

Here, we’ll look into three basketball superstars – LeBron James, Michael Jordan, and Yao Ming – to determine ten positive messages that they embody. Let’s get started.

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1. Set self-expectations

Image credit: mccarmona23

“You have to expect things of yourself before you can do them.” – Michael Jordan.

This wonderful piece of quote rings true for everyone, especially athletes. Setting clear expectations for a specific game or any other tasks keeps you focused on quantifiable goals.

These expectations can also be for yourself in general. For example, LeBron James once mentioned that his expectation is “to try to get better every single day”.

2. Do not fear failure

Failure is a part and parcel of life.

Another quote from Michael Jordan details how he has missed more than 9,000 shots in his career. In a session with the media, LeBron James shared that he embraces his failures without letting it overcome him. He thinks that his failures have played a pivotal role in his success.

On a similar note, Yao Ming answered a firm “no” when asked if he would do anything differently in the MBA if he could go back in time. He believes that his failures and mistakes are valuable assets that moulded him into the person that he is today.

3. Don’t give up

Naturally, failures will leave a bitter taste in the mouth.

However, it is no reason to give up. As we have just discovered, all three basketball pros have faced their fair share of failures. If any of them had given up, they certainly wouldn’t be the successful athletes that the world knows them for.

4. Have a positive mindset

How exactly can one plough through failures without giving up?

It all boils down to a positive mindset. One can only take failures in stride by truly believing that it’s an opportunity to learn how to succeed. The power of positive thinking can be applied to various situations and is a crucial key to being happy.

Keep this quote from Michael Jordan in mind: “Always turn a negative situation into a positive situation.”

5. Take good care of yourself

Image credit: Keith Allison

LeBron James is known to take impeccable care of his body. He has invested plenty of time and money to be in tip-top shape. In fact, he reportedly has a team of trainers, chefs and massage therapists in his home-cum-gym to work on his personal health and fitness.

While that’s on the rather extreme end of things, your kids can certainly derive the importance of exercising, eating well and getting sufficient rest from him.

Neither Michael Jordan nor Yao Ming would be the accomplished basketball players they are without having the discipline to take care of themselves too.   

6. Put your family first

In the midst of LeBron James’s busy life, he is fully aware that there is one entity he should never neglect: his family. This basketball pro has not been shy to express his love for his wife and three children on social media. His wife himself has sung praises about his humble nature and the way he treats his family with respect.

This something you’d definitely want your kids to emulate!

7. Embrace cultural differences

Image credit: Keith Allison

This particular lesson is best acquired from Yao Ming, a former international student in the US. Brought up from a different culture, Yao Ming had to blend in and adopt the way of life in the US when he first came to the country.

During an interview with an ESPN-Tencent reporter, he highlighted the value of finding commonalities, as opposed to focusing on differences between people. He also talked about accepting and respecting the culture of another country.

Indeed, this notion of putting aside prejudices is highly relevant in today’s globalised world.

8. Follow the rules

Back in 2012, Yao Ming was nominated as a contributor on the Hall of Fame. However, he declined as typically, players can only qualify after retiring for a minimum of five years.

Instead of letting people make an exception for him, he wanted to follow the rules.

This is something that your child can learn – not only from Yao Ming but indeed any sporting champion, including Michael Jordan and LeBron James.

Competitive sports require participants to play by the rules. This would promote trust, discipline and most importantly fairness in the race towards success.

9. Don’t be afraid to cry

The world of basketball seeps with masculinity. It’s dominated by muscular, tall and tough men. Your kid might just aspire to personify this masculinity, but he should keep in mind that it’s okay to show emotions.

After all, LeBron James cried when Cavs won the NBA Championship. Michael Jordan teared up when he received the Presidential Medals of Freedom. And Yao Ming – well, he almost cried when he got a heartwarming welcome in Houston in 2016.

10. Live life with passion

If there’s one message that these three basketball pros chorus in unison, it would be to live life with passion. All of them were driven by a burning fire to pursue their dream, which is how they were able to reach their full potential.

Your kid should definitely do the same. Start his/her journey with Coachradar.