7 Kobe Bryant Quotes To Inspire Your Swimming Career

This week, athletes across the world of sport are mourning Kobe Bryantone of the best professional basketball players in history and an iconic sports figure for his legendary dedication to his craft and his self-styled “Mamba Mentality” in key moments. Bryant died this week in a helicopter crash, prompting an outpouring of tributes and respect from athletes in every sport imaginable.

Bryant’s athletic mentality can easily be applied to the sport of swimming. Here are our favorite quotes from Bryant:

Making Sacrifices For Greatness

“There’s a choice we have to make as people, as individuals, if you want to be great at something. You have to make the inherent sacrifices that come along with that. Family time, hanging out with your friends… We all can be masters at our craft. But you have to make sacrifices that come along with making that decision.”

Dealing With Setbacks, Injuries, Defeats

“Be sad. Be mad. Be frustrated. Scream. Cry. Sulk. When you wake up you will think it was just a nightmare only to realize it’s all too real. You will be angry and wish for the day back, the game back THAT play back. But reality gives nothing back and nor should you.”

Being a Leader

“To be an effective leader, you have to be a really good listener and not to what’s being said, but to what’s not being said, you know. You have to be really observant. That was a big transition for me. I went from being a scorer… to being a leader. And that meant putting others first. That means not worrying about are you in rhythm, are you playing well in this game, are you ready to go, to being, are they ready? What can I do to help them be ready?”

Never Being Intimidated

“My mind doesn’t work that way. It’s something that’s never even entered my thought process. The last time I was intimidated was when I was 6 years old in karate class. I was an orange belt and the instructor ordered me to fight a black belt who was a couple years older and a lot bigger. I was scared s—less. I mean, I was terrified and he kicked my ass. But then I realized he didn’t kick my ass as bad as I thought he was going to and that there was nothing really to be afraid of. That was around the time I realized that intimidation didn’t really exist if you’re in the right frame of mind.”

Avoiding the Fear of Failure or Criticism

You’ve got to step up and play, man. You can’t worry about criticism. You can’t worry about failure. You really can’t worry about that stuff. You’ve got to go out and figure that out and play and do the best you can, and whatever happens, happens. You can’t be held captive by the fear of failure or the fear of what people may say.”

Dealing With Self-Doubt

“I have self-doubt. I have insecurity. I have fear of failure. I have nights when I show up at the arena and I’m like, ‘My back hurts, my feet hurt, my knees hurt. I don’t have it. I just want to chill.’ We all have self-doubt. You don’t deny it, but you also don’t capitulate to it. You embrace it.”

Reflecting, but only as a way to move forward

“I’m reflective only in the sense that I learn to move forward. I reflect with a purpose.”

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cynthia curran
11 months ago

Its sad he died with his daughter who was only 13, but also a baseball coach from Orange Coast College He had a house in La and one also in Orange County. .

VA Steve
11 months ago

So great how he Loved all sports, including swimming. Great quite selection.

11 months ago

A brilliant philosopher. I also believe he was a breastroker.

Old Man Chalmers
Reply to  Redneckhillbilly
11 months ago

very disrespectful. yes he made some mistakes but who hasn’t? phelps has two DUIs to his name with one following him for most of his swimming career. they also left a positive impact on the sporting community and the world in general

M d e
Reply to  Old Man Chalmers
11 months ago

To be completely fair, if true which I have no idea, I’d consider sexual assault more than just a mistake.

About Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson swam for nearly twenty years. Then, Jared Anderson stopped swimming and started writing about swimming. He's not sick of swimming yet. Swimming might be sick of him, though. Jared was a YMCA and high school swimmer in northern Minnesota, and spent his college years swimming breaststroke and occasionally pretending …

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