7 Signs of a Humble Athlete

Does you child play sports? One of the most important qualities they can have as an athlete is humility.

In his book Don’t Waste Your Sports, author C. J. Mahaney profiles what a humble athlete looks like:

1. A humble athlete recognizes his limitations. We all come with divinely imposed limitations—limitations meant to humble us.

2. The humble athlete welcomes critique and correction from coaches and teammates. If we’re humble, we realize that we have weaknesses, so we welcome correction. If we’re humble, we know we need to improve, so we want others to show us where and how.

3. The humble athlete acknowledges the contribution of others. No athlete accomplishes anything alone.

4. The humble athlete is gracious in defeat and modest in victory. When the humble athlete loses, he recognizes that his opponents played better, and he sincerely congratulates them on their win. And when the humble athlete wins, there are no excessive celebrations, no inappropriate victory dances. He realizes that victory is a gift.

5. The humble athlete honors his coach. He doesn’t rip the coach in private, he doesn’t slouch when on the bench, and he expresses gratitude and accepts the role the coach chooses for him.

6. The humble athlete respects the officials. He doesn’t protest a call—even if it was inaccurate.

7. The humble athlete gives glory for all his athletic accomplishment to God. He knows that all of his athletic skill is ultimately a gift from God

C.J. Mahaney is the Senior Pastor of Sovereign Grace Church of Louisville and the author of several books including Humility: True GreatnessLiving the Cross-Centered Life, and Don’t Waste Your Sports. Together with his son Chad, he provides a gospel-centered perspective on sports at the Mahaney Sports blog and weekly podcast.

Can you be humble and confident at the same time?  Why or why not?