Quotes for Coaching: Hard Work and Effort

Working hard helps ensure our success (Source: Ernst Vikne)
Working hard helps ensure our success, but sometimes a little extra motivation from a quote can help with that one percent (Source: Ernst Vikne)

Nothing can sum up all the hard work and effort quite as well as Quotes. Quotes are a great vehicle for transcending all the blood sweat and tears to highlight exactly what a player and team are striving for. As part of Functional Basketball Coaching’s series on Quotes for Coaching, the below are a collection of quotes sought out for the specific purpose of highlighting the need for hard work and effort along the path to success and greatness.


One of the great aspects about quotes focusing on hard work and effort is they make great drops of inspiration delivered during hard going training sessions. Delivered in a team building session, pre, during or post games, or during training sessions these quotes help give a moment of motivation to your players.


  1. “Inspiration exists, but it must find you working” – Pablo Picasso
  2. “It’s hard to beat a person who never gives up” – Babe Ruth
  3. “Success is the sum of small efforts, repeated day in and day out” – Robert Collier
  4. “There are no shortcuts to any place worth going”  – Beverly Sills
  5. “Strength does not come from physical capacity. It comes from an indomitable will” – Mahatma Gandhi
  6. “I’m a greater believer in luck, and I find the harder I work the more I have of it” – Thomas Jefferson
  7. “Effort is only effort when it begins to hurt” – Jose Ortegay Gasset
  8. “Desire is the starting point of all achievement, not a hope, not a wish, but a keen pulsating desire which transcends everything” – Napoleon Hill
  9. “Let me tell you the secret that has led me to my goals: my strength lies solely in my tenacity” – Louis Pasteur
  10. “The will to succeed is important, but what’s more important is the will to prepare” – Bobby Knight
  11. “There are no shortcuts to any place worth going” – Beverly Sills
  12. “Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterwards” – Vernon Sanders Law
  13. “Hard work spotlights the character of people: some turn up their sleeves, some turn up their noses, and some don’t turn up at all” – Sam Ewing
  14. “We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, therefore, is not an act but a habit” – Aristotle
  15. “Sometimes there’s not a better way. Sometimes there’s only the hard way” Mary E. Pearson
  16. “What you do speaks so loudly that I cannot hear what you say” — Ralph Waldo Emerson
  17. “You can never quit. Winners never quit, and quitters never win” – Ted Turner
    “Freedom from effort in the present merely means that there has been effort stored up in the past” – Theodore Roosevelt
  18. 18. Keep on going and the chances are you will stumble on something, perhaps when you are least expecting it. I have never heard of anyone stumbling on something sitting down.
    Charles F. Kettering, Engineer and Inventor
  19. “Nobody’s a natural. You work hard to get good and then work to get better. It’s hard to stay on top” – Paul Coffey
  20. “What you do today can improve all your tomorrows” – Ralph Marston
  21. “The hardships that I encountered in the past will help me succeed in the future” – Philip Emeagwali
  22. “The heights by great men reached and kept were not attained by sudden flight, but they while their companions slept, were toiling upward in the night” – Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
  23. “Some succeed because they are destined. Some succeed because they are determined” – Unknown
  24. “You can’t build a reputation on what you are going to do” – Henry Ford
  25. “Fall down seven times, get up eight” – Japanese Proverb
  26. “Things do not happen. Things are made to happen” – John F. Kennedy
  27. “Determine never to be idle. No person will have occasion to complain of the want of time who never loses any. It is wonderful how much may be done if we are always doing” – Thomas Jefferson
  28. “What you get by achieving your goals is not as important as what you become by achieving your goals” – Henry David Thoreau
  29. “The difference between a successful person and others is not a lack of strength, not a lack of knowledge, but rather a lack in will” – Vince Lombardi
  30. “I’ve worked too hard and too long to let anything stand in the way of my goals. I will not let my teammates down and I will not let myself down” – Mia Hamm
  31. “The only thing that stands between you and your dream is the will to try and the belief that it is actually possible” – Joel Brown
  32. “Be miserable. Or motivate yourself. Whatever has to be done, it’s always your choice” – Wayne Dyer
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Coach Riches has been working within the sport, business and education industries for many years. During this time he has built an extensive number of formal and informal qualifications. A firm believer in training and development designed to help people reach their full potential, relevant o their needs and functional to their industry environment.

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