Being a professional is more than just being good at something and making money from it. Professional athletes compete at the highest level and usually lead some of the most rigorous lifestyles.
If you wanted to become a professional athlete and missed your opportunity, chances are that your children or children that you mentor might become athletes. One of the first thing on this list of requirements is age.
Start as Young as Possible
For the past century or so, athletes have started out very young, since the age of 5 and upwards. Choosing a sport at that age is difficult as being a child, one tends to like a lot of things. Some children, however, choose a single sport and stick to it. They usually become professionals by the age of 18.
Mentor your child on their journey to professional athleticism whether by finding them a good team and coach or helping them select the sport they love the most or feel the best at.
Find a Good Team or Coach
Depending on the sport, you will want to find a good team or coach. If the sport is team oriented such as football, baseball, water polo or basketball, you should look for teams all around your area. If the athlete to be is in school, they should join their school team as they tend to get benefits while performing well and studying regularly.
If the sport is an individual sport like tennis or track and field, then look at a local tennis club or track club with a good reputation and a great coach. You want nothing but the best for the athlete to be.
Dedication and Hard Work
No matter which sport the young athlete chooses, dedication is one of the things that keeps the progress coming. There will be competition, there will be challenges and even injuries, breakdowns and personal drama along the way. All of these are just obstacles on the path to becoming a professional, obstacles an athlete should learn to deal with.
There will be times when quitting becomes the foremost thought but then again, many an athlete had thought of that yet some still persist and are at the top, for example, the big tennis trio of Federer, Nadal, and Djokovic. Dedication is what keeps you going.
Once you start your professional career, you should know that compromises are a must. There will not be enough time, physically, to do everything, maybe enough for a hobby or a family visit or a significant other. Compromises are part of the rigorous life of an athlete.
These are but a few necessary steps to becoming an athlete. There are more, but they are minor details which should be tackled later on.