Sports Sayings
Overcome Failure & Obstacles

sports sayings

Sports sayings and motivational quotes from the greatest coaches and leaders of all time!

Dealing with failure is something every athlete must overcome, and the earlier on the better. Learning to react positively instead of negatively to obstacles and disappointments is an important life lesson that sports teaches.

These sports sayings inspire us to view failure as normal, not fatal.

Overcome failure and obstacles with a powerful selection of daily inspirational quotes from John Wooden, Pat Summitt, and more!

"To some, challenges are exhausting. To others, they are opportunities in waiting." – Tony DiCicco

"We all choke, and the man who says he doesn't choke is lying like hell." – Lee Trevino

"When an archer misses the mark, he turns and looks for the fault within himself. Failure to hit the bulls-eye is never the fault of the target. To improve your aim, improve yourself." – Unknown

"You can learn little from victory. You can learn everything from defeat." – Christy Mathewson

"Accept the challenges so that you can feel the exhilaration of victory."– George S. Patton

"A man may make mistakes, but he isn't a failure until he starts blaming someone else." They Call Me Coach by John Wooden

"It's a lonesome walk to the sidelines, especially when thousands of people are cheering your replacement." – Fran Tarkenton

"Defeat should never be a source of discouragement, but rather a fresh stimulus." – Unknown

"No one knows what to say in the loser's room." – Muhammad Ali

"Most people admire a good loser, just as long as it isn't them." – Unknown

"You can't win all the time. There are guys out there who are better than you." – Yogi Berra

"Failure is not defeat…until you stop trying."– Unknown

"Failure is the greatest opportunity I have to know who I really am." – Unknown

"Victory and defeat are each of the same price." – Thomas Jefferson



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"Challenges make you discover things about yourself that you never really knew." – Cicely Tyson

"How a person plays the game shows something of his character – how he or she loses shows all of it." – Unknown

"Forget mistakes. Organize victory out of mistakes." – Unknown

"Losers let it happen. Winners make it happen." – Unknown

"When success turns a person's head, he is facing failure." – Unknown

"Winners concentrate on winning. Losers concentrate on getting by." – Unknown

"A winner is a person who asks questions and listens to the answer; a loser never listens." – Unknown

"Failures are a normal part of life. They are not disasters." – Unknown

"Every man's got to figure to get beat sometimes.”"– Joe Louis

More sports sayings...

"What is defeat? Nothing but education, nothing but the first step to something better." – Wendell Phillips

"A failure establishes only this, that our determination to succeed was not strong enough." – Christian Nestell Bovee

"I have learned more from my mistakes than from my successes." – Sir Humphrey Davy

"If at first you don't succeed, you are running about average." – Unknown

"There are no free throws in life, even when you get fouled." – Deborah Miller Palmore

"The taste of defeat has a richness of experience all its own." – Bill Bradley

"I have a love-hate relationship with losing. I hate how it makes me feel, which is basically sick. But I love what it brings out." – Pat Summitt



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"Success is simply a matter of luck. Ask any failure." - Unknown

"Success is not forever, and failure isn't fatal."- Unknown

"No man ever became great or good except through many and great mistakes." – William E. Gladstone

"You can never learn less; you can only learn more. The reason I know so much is because I have made so many mistakes." – Buckminster Fuller

"History has demonstrated that the most notable winners usually encountered heartbreaking obstacles before they triumphed. They won because they refused to become discouraged by their defeats." – B.C. Forbes

"Difficulties are opportunities to better things; they are stepping-stones to greater experience…When one door closes, another always opens; as a natural law it has to, to balance."– Brian Adams

"Things turn out best for those who make the best of the way things turn out." – from They Call Me Coach by John Wooden

"Many receive advice. Only the wise profit from it." - Unknown

"Obstacles are those frightful things you see when you take your eyes off your goals." - Unknown

"Every adversity carries with it the seeds of greater benefit." – Napoleon Hill

"Failures are finger posts on the road to achievement." – C.S. Lewis

"A diamond cannot be polished without friction, nor a man perfected without trials." – Chinese Proverb

"A smooth sea never made a skillful mariner." – English Proverb

"There is no doubt in my mind that there are many ways to be a winner, but there is only one way to be a loser and that is to fail and not look beyond the failure." – Kyle Rote, Jr.



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More sports sayings...

"Failure is the tuition you pay for success." – Walter Brunell

"What is the difference between an obstacle and an opportunity? Our attitude toward it. Every opportunity has a difficulty, and every difficulty has an opportunity." – J. Sidlow Baxter

"We are all faced with a series of great opportunities brilliantly disguised as impossible situations." – Chuck Swindoll

"Burnout doesn't occur because we're solving problems; it occurs because we've been trying to solve the same problems over and over. The problem named is the problem solved. Identify and confront the real problems in your path." – Susan Scott

"In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity." – Albert Einstein

"Most great people have attained their greatest success just one step beyond their greatest failure." – Napoleon Hill

"Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall." – Confucius

"Men succeed when they realize that their failures are the preparations for their victories." – Ralph Waldo Emerson

"You may be disappointed if you fail, but you are doomed if you don't try." – Beverly Sills

"A refined ability to learn from failure and to grow through losses is necessary to achieve excellence in any human endeavor." – Terry Orlick, Ph.D.

"Nobody hands you excellence on a silver platter. You earn it through planning, preparing, and persisting in the face of all obstacles." – Terry Orlick, Ph.D.

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