The Top Motivational Sports Quotes of All Time

sports quotes

Sports isn’t just about keeping score to see who is better. It’s also about showing yourself what you’re made of. Whether you play an individual sport or a team sport, when it’s time to practice or compete, you’re your biggest obstacle. How far are you willing to push yourself in order to improve? When you’re tired and all you can think of is throwing in the towel, just remember, the person or team you’ll be competing against is going the extra mile. Will you? Here are the some of the top motivational sports quotes for all the athletes of the world.

“Adversity causes some men to break; others to break records.”

William A. Ward

“You have to expect things of yourself before you can do them.”

Michael Jordan

“The minute you start talking about what you’re going to do if you lose, you have lost.”

George Shultz

“Set your goals high, and don’t stop till you get there.”

Bo Jackson

“You can become a winner only if you are willing to walk over the edge.”

Damon Runyon

“The only place where success comes before work is in the dictionary.”

Vidal Sassoon

“The difference between a successful person and others is not a lack of strength, not a lack of knowledge, but rather a lack of will.”

Vincent T. Lombardi

“The game isn’t over till it’s over.”

Yogi Berra

“You learn you can do your best even when its hard, even when you’re tired and maybe hurting a little bit. It feels good to show some courage.”

Joe Namath

“If you chase two rabbits, both will escape.”


“He who stops being better stops being good.”

Oliver Cromwell

“Great works are performed not by strength but by perseverance.”

Samuel Johnson

“I’ve always made a total effort, even when the odds seemed entirely against me. I never quit trying; I never felt that I didn’t have a chance to win.”

Arnold Palmer

“To succeed, you need to find something to hold on to, something to motivate you, something to inspire you.”

Tony Dorsett

“Do not let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do.”

John Wooden

“It’s not the size of the dog in the fight, but the size of the fight in the dog.”

Archie Griffen

“The day you take complete responsibility for yourself, the day you stop making any excuses, that’s the day you start to the top.”

O.J. Simpson

“It is a rough road that leads to the heights of greatness.”


“Don’t look back. Something might be gaining on you.”

Satchel Paige

“The way a team plays as a whole determines its success. You may have the greatest bunch of individual stars in the world, but if they don’t play together, the club wont be worth a dime.”

Babe Ruth

“Sweat plus sacrifice equals success.”

Charlie Finley

“Ask not what your teammates can do for you. Ask what you can do for your teammates.”

Magic Johnson

“Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity.”

Coach Darrel Royal

“If you can believe it, the mind can achieve it.”

Ronnie Lott

“There are only two options regarding commitment. You’re either IN or you’re OUT. There is no such thing as life in-between.”

Pat Riley

“Concentration is the ability to think about absolutely nothing when it is absolutely necessary.”

Ray Knight

“The principle is competing against yourself. It’s about self-improvement, about being better than you were the day before.”

Steve Young

“I learned that if you want to make it bad enough, no matter how bad it is, you can make it.”

Gale Sayers

“When you’re riding, only the race in which you’re riding is important.”

Bill Shoemakers

“The key is not the will to win. Everybody has that. It is the will to prepare to win that is important.”

Bobby Knight

“Only he who can see the invisible can do the impossible.”

Frank L. Gaines

“There may be people that have more talent than you, but theres no excuse for anyone to work harder than you do.”

Derek Jeter

“I don’t plan on being disappointed. We plan on being really good, and obviously we plan on winning.”

Gregg Troy

“It ain’t over till it’s over.”

Yogi Berra

“A champion is someone who gets up when he can’t.”

Jack Dempsey

“You were born to be a player. You were meant to be here. This moment is yours.”

Herb Brooks

“It is not the size of a man but the size of his heart that matters.”

Evander Holyfield

“Persistence can change failure into extraordinary achievement.”

Marv Levy

“Age is no barrier. It’s a limitation you put on your mind.”

Jackie Joyner-Kersee

“Do not let what you can not do interfere with what you can do.”

John Wooden

“The highest compliment that you can pay me is to say that I work hard every day, that I never dog it.”

Wayne Gretzky

“The will to win is important, but the will to prepare is vital.”

Joe Paterno

Never give up! Failure and rejection are only the first step to succeeding.”

Jim Valvano

“Never let your head hang down. Never give up and sit down and grieve. Find another way.”

Satchel Paige

“Adversity cause some men to break; others to break records.”

William A. Ward

“I always felt that my greatest asset was not my physical ability, it was my mental ability.”

Bruce Jenner

“It’s not the will to win that matters—everyone has that. It’s the will to prepare to win that matters.”

Paul “Bear” Bryant

“There are only two options regarding commitment. You’re either IN or you’re OUT. There is no such thing as life in-between.”

Pat Riley

“Somewhere behind the athlete you’ve become and the hours of practice and the coaches who have pushed you is a little girl who fell in love with the game and never looked back… play for her.”

Mia Hamm

“The hardest skill to acquire in this sport is the one where you compete all out, give it all you have, and you are still getting beat no matter what you do. When you have the killer instinct to fight through that, it is very special.”

Eddie Reese

“Some people say I have attitude – maybe I do… but I think you have to. You have to believe in yourself when no one else does – that makes you a winner right there. ”

Venus Williams

“An athlete cannot run with money in his pockets. He must run with hope in his heart and dreams in his head.”

Emil Zatopek

“One man practicing sportsmanship is far better than 50 preaching it.”

Knute Rockne

“Wisdom is always an overmatch for strength.”

Phil Jackson

“What keeps me going is not winning, but the quest for reaching potential in myself as a coach and my kids as divers. It’s the pursuit of excellence.”

Ron O’Brien

“Pain is temporary. It may last a minute, or an hour, or a day, or a year, but eventually it will subside and something else will take its place. If I quit, however, it lasts forever.”

Lance Armstrong

“Baseball is the only field of endeavor where a man can succeed three times out of ten and be considered a good performer.”

Ted Williams

“A champion is afraid of losing. Everyone else is afraid of winning.”

Billie Jean King

“Never let the fear of striking out get in your way.”

Babe Ruth

“Gold medals aren’t really made of gold. They’re made of sweat, determination, and a hard-to-find alloy called guts.”

Dan Gable

“A trophy carries dust. Memories last forever.”

Mary Lou Retton

“When you’ve got something to prove, there’s nothing greater than a challenge.”

Terry Bradshaw

“You’re never a loser until you quit trying.”

Mike Ditka

“Victory is in having done your best. If you’ve done your best, you’ve won.”

Bill Bowerman

“You miss 100 percent of the shots you don’t take.”

Wayne Gretzky

“The five S’s of sports training are: stamina, speed, strength, skill, and spirit; but the greatest of these is spirit.”

Ken Doherty

“It’s not whether you get knocked down; it’s whether you get up.”

Vince Lombardi

“The only way to prove that you’re a good sport is to lose.”

Ernie Banks

“I’ve missed more than 9,000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I’ve been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.”

Michael Jordan

“I hated every minute of training, but I said, ‘Don’t quit. Suffer now and live the rest of your life as a champion.'”

Muhammad Ali

“Number one is just to gain a passion for running. To love the morning, to love the trail, to love the pace on the track. And if some kid gets really good at it, that’s cool too.”

Pat Tyson

“You have to do something in your life that is honorable and not cowardly if you are to live in peace with yourself.”

Larry Brown

“Most people give up just when they’re about to achieve success. They quit on the one yard line. They give up at the last minute of the game one foot from a winning touchdown.”

Ross Perot

“When you’re riding, only the race in which you’re riding is important.”

Bill Shoemaker

“Never give up, never give in, and when the upper hand is ours, may we have the ability to handle the win with the dignity that we absorbed the loss.”

Doug Williams

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