6 Traits The World’s Most Respected Athletes Possess

Whether you are a promising young athlete or a seasoned veteran, sportsmanship is key at any skill level, in any sport. You may be asking, “What specific traits do athletes, like Peyton Manning, have that make them great role models?”

Here are 6 things to keep in mind if you want to be a respected player on and off the field:

  1. Be positive. Greet other players and staff with a smile and respect before and after a game.
  2. Be conscious of your reputation. This is especially important in regards to your online and social media presence. Think before you speak and post.
  3. Be supportive and positive of everyone, even your most loathed rival.
  4. Respect the rules of the game. The player who plays a clean game deserves respect.
  5. Never stop being a leader. On the field or in a supermarket, your actions define you. Be a person you would look up to.
  6. Respond to criticism objectively. No matter what you do, there will be those who try to bring you down. Keeping a level head is a sign of confidence, leadership and respectability.


Do you want to improve your game, no matter what the sport? This might sound obvious, but many star athletes forget about a very simple skill that can set them apart from the competition. That skill is sportsmanship.

You can be your team’s top wide receiver, midfielder, left wing, power forward – you name it. Without having respect for the game and your fellow athletes, however, your extraordinary talents will take a back seat to your attitude and demeanor. Here are some prime examples:

New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady has won four Super Bowls, two MVP awards and has been to the Pro Bowl a whopping ten times in his career. Yet, he has involved himself in the trending "Deflategate" scandal and has put his integrity as an athlete into question. Whether or not Brady was fully involved, his reputation remains tarnished. No longer will people focus all of their attention on his Super Bowl wins or how many touchdowns he has thrown. When Brady's name comes up now, it may involve an argument as to whether or not he is a cheater.

Luis Suarez came under heavy scrutiny during the last FIFA World Cup for biting an opposing player during a match. On top of that, he has bitten two other players and once received a hefty suspension and fine for allegedly making racist remarks to French soccer player, Patrice Evra. Suarez is a prolific goal scorer on both national and international level as well as a star caliber player. However, his accomplishments are mired by his poor sportsmanship and lack of respect for fellow soccer players.

On the other end of the spectrum, there are people like Denver Broncos quarterback, Peyton Manning and Tampa Bay Lightning captain, Steven Stamkos. Both players are elite class athletes who dominate their respective positions. Just as important, they are prime examples of what it means to be an athlete and a role model. With every interview, they wear the leadership hat well, keep level heads no matter what they – and their teams – are going through.