Tips for Athletic Tryouts

From a College Athlete

If you’re reading this, chances are you’re either nervous about your upcoming tryouts or you’re looking to get better this time around. As a collegiate athlete, I’ve had my fair share of tryouts, so I’ve listed my top 9 best tips that I know coaches look for and have worked for me in the past.

The Night Before Tryouts:

Get a Good Night’s Rest

Let’s be real, the key to success is hard work and you can’t do that if you’re exhausted. Make sure you get around 8 hours of sleep the night before your tryout. But also, don’t wake up right before it’s time to for your tryout. Give yourself a few hours to wake up and digest a good breakfast. 

Eat Carbs for Dinner

Carbs…my favorite food group. As an athlete, it is important to eat a lot of carbs the night before you work out. Complex carbs, like pasta, breakdown over time and will give you energy for your big day.

carbs for tryouts

Drink LOTS of Water

This was one my mom always told me to do, but I didn’t like doing. It wasn’t until one hot tryout where I felt sluggish and a little bit like passing out. As I’ve now learned, you can avoid this by hydrating 1-2 days before so help you stay on your game. Trying to chug the day of just won’t do the trick. 

At Tryouts:

Be on Time!

Coaches strongly dislike people who show up late. It’s risky to even be exactly on time. To be safe, make sure you show up at least 15 minutes early to the warm-up. 

warm up for tryouts

Hustle, Hustle, Hustle

While it’s important to hustle during the game, it’s also important to hustle during the whole tryout. Jog to the bench, jog to help set up drills, do not walk. If you hustle everywhere, coaches will notice you. It’s better to have a hardworking player with less skill than a talented player who doesn’t hustle. 

Focus on Your Strengths

This one’s simple, do what you know how to do! If your strength lies in attacking, defending, shooting, blocking, passing, whatever sports or skill, make sure you are showing off what you got. 

do your best at tryouts

Be a Team Player

Coaches want a team player who is selfless and works or the good of the team. You can show this by sharing the ball and working as hard as you can in whatever position you are put in. Being positive is key, you can compliment and encourage the people around you and celebrating their victories. 

Listen and Ask Questions

One of the most valuable rules I’ve learned is to never talk while the coach is talking. Make sure you are respectful and listening attentively, so you don’t want to miss something important. Also, if there is something you need clarity on, don’t be afraid to ask! Coaches would rather you do something the right way than being confused and do the drill the wrong way. 

questions at tryouts

Stay Positive

One of the most valuable rules I’ve learned is to never talk while the coach is talking. Make sure you are respectful and listening attentively, so you don’t want to miss something important. Also, if there is something you need clarity on, don’t be afraid to ask! Coaches would rather you do something the right way than being confused and do the drill the wrong way. 

Help Clean Up

Being selfless is a quality that coaches look for in a team player. Being able to pick up someone else’s trash off the bench or helping your coach clean up practice will impress them for sure. 

With these tips and insights, you will 100% crush your next tryout! Remember, you are not competing with someone else, you are competing with what YOU are capable of. For more inspiration, check out our favorite inspirational quotes for athletes!

quote for tryouts

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