Quotes for Coaching: Motivation and Inspiration

Motivation and inspiration can be in short supply when spirits are low. Quotes can help fill that void for us when we cannot think of the right words for ourselves (Photo Source: Iqbal Osman)
Motivation and inspiration can be in short supply when spirits are low. Quotes can help fill that void for us when we cannot think of the right words for ourselves (Photo Source: Iqbal Osman)

Quotes are a tool that many coaches use to help set the context for a discussion or situation. Quotes can be a fantastic tool that can be used as a starting point for a discussion or as a concluding point about a topic. Quotes can be used in the game or training sessions and can be included in your pre-game talk or your teams playbook.


Quotes should be used to help emphasis a point and build meaning for your team members. With many quotes, remember that the meaning is in the eye of the beholder so as the coach you will need to often explain what you mean when using a quote by highlighting the particular quotes meaning as seen by you.


Below are some motivational and inspirational quotes selected to help your team to get started on their way.


  1. “Constant dripping hollows out a stone” – Lucretius
  2. “Remember that the happiest people are not those getting more, but those giving more” – H. Jackson Brown, Jr.
  3. “We make the world we live in and shape our own environment” – Orison Swett Marden
  4. “Dream big and dare to fail” – Norman Vaughan
  5. “Do not wait to strike till the iron is hot; but make it hot by striking” – William B. Sprague
  6. “The first step toward success is taken when you refuse to be a captive of the environment in which you first find yourself” – Mark Caine
  7. “If you do what you’ve always done, you’ll get what you’ve always gotten” – Tony Robbins
  8. “Motivation is the art of getting people to do what you want them to do because they want to do it” – Dwight D. Eisenhower
  9. “Nothing will ever be attempted if all possible objections must first be overcome” – Samuel Johnson
  10. “The will to win, the desire to succeed, the urge to reach your full potential… these are the keys that will unlock the door to personal excellence” – Confucius
  11. “Limitations live only in our minds. But if we use our imaginations, our possibilities become limitless” –Jamie Paolinetti
  12. “There are no traffic jams along the extra mile” – Roger Staubach
  13. “Challenges are what make life interesting and overcoming them is what makes life meaningful” – Joshua J. Marine
  14. “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover” – Mark Twain
  15. “How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world”  – Anne Frank
  16. “You can never cross the ocean until you have the courage to lose sight of the shore” – Christopher Columbus
  17. “There is nothing deep down inside us except what we have put there ourselves” – Richard Rorty
  18. “Winning isn’t everything, but wanting to win is” – Vince Lombardi
  19. “Motivation is a fire from within. If someone else tries to light that fire under you, chances are it will burn very briefly” – Stephen R. Covey
  20. The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now. –Chinese Proverb
  21. “Losers visualize the penalties of failure. Winners visualize the rewards of success” – Unknown
  22. “Don’t wait. The time will never be just right” – Napoleon Hill
  23. “The pain you feel today is the strength you feel tomorrow. For every challenge encountered there is opportunity for growth” – Unknown
  24. “A real decision is measured by the fact that you’ve taken a new action. If there’s no action, you haven’t truly decided” – Tony Robbins
  25. “Definiteness of purpose is the starting point of all achievement” – W. Clement Stone


A good place to start in weaving a quote into what you would like to say is to maybe talk about the person who provided the quote and emphasis some adversity they had in their life under which the quote was made. Whatever your strategy is sure to try to get the most out of the quote by giving it time to be absorbed by the group.


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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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