John Wooden quotes

I’ve always been fascinated with and inspired by the legendary basketball coach John Wooden, whose quotes about life, people and sport have been applied to coaching, teaching and business. Here are some of my favorites.


“I think you have to be what you are. Don’t try to be somebody else. You have to be yourself at all times.”


“Consider the rights of others before your own feelings, and the feelings of others before your own rights.”


“I don’t think I was a fine game coach. I’m trying to be honest. I think I was a good practice coach.”


“If I am through learning, I am through.”


“It is amazing how much can be accomplished if no one cares who gets the credit.”


“Listen if you want to be heard”


“Never try to be better than someone else. Learn from others, and try to be the best you can be. Success is the by-product of that preparation.”


“You can do more good by being good than any other way.”


Adversity is the state in which man most easily becomes acquainted with himself, being especially free of admirers then.”


“Things turn out best for the people who make the best of the way things turn out.”


“Whatever you do in life, surround yourself with smart people who’ll argue with you.”


“You can’t let praise or criticism get to you. It’s a weakness to get caught up in either one.”


“In the end, it’s about the teaching, and what I always loved about coaching was the practices. Not the games, not the tournaments, not the alumni stuff. But teaching the players during practice was what coaching was all about to me.”


“Love is the most important thing in the world. Hate, we should remove from the dictionary.”