Everyone has tried out before; whether it was for a high school team, select team, college team, or a pro team, these tryouts sometimes don’t go as planned. Fear and anxiety are two of the most common emotions that can occur during the tryout and this is difficult to handle. You feel tight and not like yourself, and because of this feeling, you completely forget to perform at the level you know you’re capable of. Now that you’re aware of your poor performance, your confidence is on a downward spiral, and it feels impossible to recover.
Fear, not guys, I am here to help you with any future tryouts you have and give you the five things to remember when you’re trying out.
1. Write down what a great tryout looks like for you.
Quincy and I are always encouraging preparation, mindset, and visualization. Writing down what a great tryout looks like will help you prepare for the tryout. At times people go into tryouts, and they don’t have a game plan, and because of this, the tryout doesn’t go as planned, and we want you to be successful. For me, I’m a defensive midfielder, so what a great tryout looks like for me will be different than a forward's tryouts, so make sure to be specific as possible.
Like I said be specific, so for me, I would have to be simple with my passing, win duels, win aerial battles, communicate, and be a significant presence on the field. Now that I’ve written this down, I now can start visualizing and preparing for the tryout.
2. Get to the tryout early to warm up and clear your head
Make sure you arrive first, so you aren’t rushing and bringing that energy to the tryout. You want to be calm and relaxed so that you can perform at your best!
3. Keep it simple to gain confidence
This tip is the one players struggle with the most because they think they need to be flashy and do everything to impress the coaches. This will backfire because coaches know when a player is playing within themselves, and when they are playing someone else's game. Now I do want to be clear; you should try things and not play it too safe because I don't want you to blend in with the rest. I want you to be composed and build up into the tryout, so you don’t hurt your chances in the first 20 minutes of the tryout. Gain confidence by completing passes and do the fundamentals well, then take chances and express yourself freely!
4. Communicate and be a good teammate
Coaches are looking for players who have personality and are good teammates. This is an important dynamic, and too many players think this doesn’t matter. Coaches are always looking for the best players, but for players that fit the team well. Coaches like vocal leaders because it shows that they’re an excellent communicator and a good teammate. I know not every player is vocal, but even little things like motivating a teammate after a mistake, or giving a high five after a great play goes a long way.
5. Have Fun
This might be seen as cliche, but having fun is essential. Soccer is a game, and it should be fun. I find the game to be more fun when I’m prepared, confident, and positive. Alright, there you have it, my five tips to remember when you’re trying out! Make sure to go to the tryout and give it you're all! If you give it your all and it doesn’t go your way, that's ok. Continue to redefine your game and be proud of your growth and the process!