Megan Moody

Megan Moody

The star of Great Britain's ladies basketball team says "You have to believe that you can be successful and achieve things."

Raise Your Game: Why basketball?

Megan Moody: Basketball has always been in my life. Both my parents played basketball. At around the age of four or five, I started playing competitively and loved it. I tried lots of other sports when I was growing up but basketball was my passion.

RYG: What skills have you learnt from basketball?

MM: If you want to be successful, you need a sense of discipline. If it's a Friday night and you've got a game on Saturday, you can't go out partying with your friends. I sacrificed a lot to get here, but I don't think of it as a sacrifice, in terms of what I've gotten out of it. I've travelled the world with basketball.

You learn leadership and team skills. You gain a lot of confidence and learn a lot about yourself. You might walk into a new team and not know a single person, but by the end of the day, you've made friends. Sport in general gives you so many opportunities.

You can put your sporting achievements down on CV's. People look at that and think 'Good team player - knows how to work well in a team environment.' In terms of applying for jobs, sport gives you a bit of an edge over other people.

RYG: What's the key to being successful?

Profile

Name:
Megan Moody

Born:
3 November 1983

From:
Victoria, Australia

Game:
Basketball

Position:
Forward

Achievements:

  • C-USA Regular Season Champion (2006)
  • C-USA Tournament Winner (2006)
  • All-C-USA 2nd Team (2006)
  • WNBA Quarterfinalist (2006)

MM: Self belief is a big thing. You have to believe that you can be successful and achieve things. You have to go into things wholeheartedly. You have to be prepared to put yourself out there.

It's the same going into a job interview as it is going onto a basketball court. You want to be a person that stands out, so that people will sit up and take notice. Everything stems from confidence. If you step out onto a basketball court with confidence, and another team sees that you're pumped and ready, it gives you a little bit of an edge.

RYG: How important is time management?

MM: Time management is crucial, even at a young age when you're starting out, trying to juggle school and basketball, homework and a part time job. You have to get yourself into a routine.

Once I got to High School I was really focused on my basketball. I'd be working out at six in the morning so, the night before, I would have to make sure I had everything set out ready. My lunch and school uniform would be ready and my homework would be done.

When we're in team camp, our days are jammed with training. You can't be staying up until two o'clock in the morning. You have to make sure that whatever you need to get done is done by ten o'clock. As a professional athlete you have to take care of your body. Your body needs sleep to recover. I'd like to be on the internet talking to my friends, but I have to get my rest.

RYG: What makes a good team player?

MM: Someone who picks you up if you're feeling down. On court they're someone that's always willing to go that bit extra for the team. They're someone that pushes 110% all the time. You don't need to be someone who goes out there and scores 30 points a game. My ideal team mate is someone who does the little things.

RYG: How important is communication on court?

MM: We wouldn't be where we are without communication. Communication is everything, not just in sport. In life it's essential. On the court it's huge. We're always talking. If you had us all mic'd up for a game you'd hear constant signals and calls. Coaches are always saying 'Communicate, communicate, communicate.' You can never communicate enough.

RYG: How important is it to set yourself goals?

MM: You need goals in life. They allow you to strive to achieve. Our goal right now is being a successful team, going to the 2012 Olympics. I've had a dream of playing in the Olympics. I've just got to keep my head down and work a bit harder.

It's the same in school. Say to yourself 'I'm taking chemistry this year, it's not my best subject, but I want to make sure I get at least a B grade. Thursday nights and Tuesday nights are studying chemistry nights.' That way you make sure you're prepared for class.

RYG: How do you deal with the pressure of big games?

MM: There's always pressure. We learn a lot of relaxation techniques, learning how to control our heart rate and our breathing. In the end, for me, as much as I want to win, it is just a game. There always has to be a winner and a loser, but I'll give as much as I can to be on the winning side. You've got to relax, take a breath, and not listen to anything else around you.

RYG: What's more important - talent or attitude?

MM: They go hand in hand. I would rather be known as someone who's got some talent, but works her behind off every day at practice. I go out there and leave it all on the court. It doesn't matter where you are talent-wise, it's all about your work rate on the court, and your attitude on and off the court.

RYG: What advice would you give to young people looking to raise their game?

MM: You need to set yourself goals and you have to be disciplined in sticking to them. When you're young you think 'I'm too cool for that,' but you need to get yourself into good habits at a young age so that, by the time you're out there in the real world, you have building blocks in place that you can continue to work on.

You need time management in all walks of life. In university you need to manage the pressures of exams with working part time. What you put in when you're in school will set you up for life. You need to get in good study habits so that when you get to high school, you have those hours between five and eight where you study.

In order to succeed you have to give a little bit. You can't take the whole time. It's the same in sport. If you want to be successful, set yourself a goal and don't be afraid to dream. There is never a dream too big.


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