There's a difference between being a good athlete and being a good sport. You can be one, you can be both, or you can be neither. Being a good athlete is great, but being a good sport is better. Here are some of the differences between being a good athlete and being a good sport:

  • Good athletes put forth the effort needed to win. Good sports ALWAYS try their best. Sometimes people who are just naturally talented slack off because they think they don't have to try that hard. This keeps them from reaching their full potential and holds back the whole team as a result. A good sport goes all out whether she's in first place or last place.

  • Good athletes perform well. Good sports help their teammates perform well, too. They inspire others and bring out the best in them.

  • Good athletes focus on their sport, while good sports put that same effort into other areas of their lifelike school and friendships. Trying your best at other parts of life will only help your athletic performance.

  • Good athletes help the team, but good sports help their teammates. Sure, a good athlete is a good asset for the team since her ability will enhance team's performance. But a good sport is there for not just the team, but individual teammates, looking out for them and helping however she can. She is always willing to help her teammates learn a new cheerleading skill, stick to a fitness routine, reach a goal, bring their grades up, or anything else they need.

  • Good athletes want to win, but good sports don't let competitiveness stop them from respecting their competitors. A good athlete may storm out of the gym after losing a competition, but a good sport will congratulate the winner even though she is disappointed with the outcome. Then she'll go home and make sure her best is better next time!

What does being a good sport mean to you?