What Makes Champions?


My interest in what it takes to be a champion started early. As a youngster I was always questioning why? Why was that player better? Why did that team win all the time? As I got older and played football in college there were clear differences that became apparent. At first, I thought it was just talent. If you have talent you were successful, it was that straight forward or was it? If that was the case, then why was one of the most physically talented guys on the team sitting next to me on the bench? Then why did teams that appeared to have less talent consistently win? This whole search about what is the difference in the champion became a borderline obsession with me. As I got into coaching the picture became clearer to me. It clearly was a process and those that exceled as champions have certain commonalties. I do not pretend to have all the answers as to what makes a champion, but I do have some ideas based on my study, observations and my years of experience. The biggest commonality that I have seen is that champions chose. Yes, you read that correctly, they chose to be champions. They make champions choices. The choices at times are very simple and clear and other times difficult and uncomfortable.

It is a journey to becoming a champion. Like any journey you need a current up to date map and a working compass to guide you. To facilitate the journey, it helps to have the compass oriented to true north. It is a journey that many others have traveled. It is a journey with a high attrition rate. The cost is high because it is not an easy journey.

Over the next several months I will post on the concept of Champions Choice to help lend some credibility to my argument and to stimulate thought and discussion.

Vern Gambetta

Vern Gambetta

Director at Gambetta Sports Training Systems
Vern is the Director of Gambetta Sports Training Systems. He has been the a conditioning coach for several MLS teams as well as the conditioning consultant to the US Men's World Cup Soccer team. Vern is the former Director of Conditioning for the Chicago White Sox and New York Mets. He has lectured and conducted clinics in Canada, Japan, Australia and Europe and has authored six books and over one hundred articles related to coaching and sport performance in a variety of sports. He has a BA in teaching with a coaching minor and an MA in Education with an emphasis in physical education from Stanford University.
Vern Gambetta


Athletic Development Coach & Consultant. Founder of GAIN Network. Proud dad. Love to read everything.
RT @GreatestQuotes: Your aspirations are your possibilities. - Samuel Johnson - 4 years ago
Vern Gambetta

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