Three Things Every Athlete Can Learn From Legacy

Three Things Every Athlete Can Learn From Legacy

I was delighted to buy Legacy because it was sold out on Amazon for a while and I had only heard good things leading up the purchase. Living in the USA rugby is not one of the major sports here. The little bit that most people do know about the sport is The All Blacks.
The reason most people know of The All Blacks is that they win a lot and they strive for greatness. Legacy is about  The All Blacks, and there are lessons in this book that can benefit every single athlete. The book is packed with knowledge but I am going to touch on the three that I think will have the biggest impact on your life.

Legacy Lesson #1 – Sweep The Sheds

The book starts off with a bang saying “Never Be Too Big to Do the Small Things.” You see this everywhere in life. People always start of learning to love and appreciate the little things they need to do and most of the time that is what makes them successful. The All Blacks are one of the best teams in the world in any sport, and you would expect the book would start with hard work right? Nope, for this team, hard work is just assumed.

It starts talking about how some of the best athletes in the world sweep sheds. The reason they can clean the sheds is due to the humility and ride balance they have. They have humility for the magnitude of the tasks they have to handle, but they have pride in their performance. That humility means that playing on the best team in the world does not say that you are too good to clean up after yourself.

Sweeping the sheds is about doing things right, so no one else has to. We have all done this in one form or fashion. Spending time on something and doing a poor job on it, knowing that the job will just have to be redone by someone else. That is not taking pride in performance nor is it having humility for the task at hand.

Take Responsibility

One line I love that every person can apply to their lives is “What is it that needs doing, that I know something about, that probably won’t happen unless I take responsibility for it? The reason this question is jam-packed is that it can be applied anywhere. It does not matter if you’re on a sports team, at school, work, or just hanging out in the home. We all know of things we are aware of and can take responsibility for knowing that no one else will, and yet we often choose not to.

The All Blacks have a strong team and culture because they have individuals willing to be a team and willing to improve their discipline. If you are not able to sweep the shed after you mess it up then how could you be depended to carry the team on your shoulders? If you were not willing to get the fundamentals right, you would not be able to get anything right.

Legacy Lesson #2 – When You’re On Top of Your Game Change Your Game

Business is the best example of what happens when you don’t change your game. Blockbuster was once the premier spot for video rental. Now, no one ever talks about blockbuster because they have disappeared. They were at the top of their game, but they did not change it. When Netflix came out, customers decided they did not have much use for Blockbuster anymore.
Blackberry took the world by storm in the early 2000s with its secure messaging and PIN text messaging so you could text people without them having your phone number. What a beautiful thing! Everyone wanted to have a Blackberry, and if you did not have BBM, you felt like a loser. Then all a sudden the iPhone came out, but Blackberry did not think any serious person would want one of those devices. They were at the top, but they did not change their game. Legacy teaches you why this is a horrible idea.
It does not matter if you are climbing to be the best or if you are already the best. Nothing stays constant in life. What this means is that if you are not getting better, you are getting worse. The worst thing you can do is just keep everything the same year after year and think that you will continue to be the best.

They Book Mentions Four Stages for Organizational Change

  • A Case for Change
You Must recognize the case for change. If you don’t, you will always be the alcoholic saying that they don’t have a problem or be like Blackberry and completely ignore this new game-changing the product.
  • A Compelling Picture of the Future
You need a vision for the changes you want to make. You need direction in life, and you can’t get to a location without an idea of where it is. Also can’t get to your goal without a vision.
  • A Sustained Capability to Change
Two things need to be done here. The first is creating a learning environment where people are willing to learn new things. The second is eliminating anything that resists change or holds on to the old ways.
  • A Credible Plan to Execute
After learning and removing obstacles, you need a plan to follow to help ensure you reach the destination.
The organizational decline is guaranteed if the leaders don’t plan for change. The same goes for your life. If you don’t plan to get better and change your game, you will eventually lose.

Legacy Lesson #3 – Champions Do Extra

The All Blacks are about giving everything you have for the team. They have an “ALL IN” attitude to everything they do.

First, to arrive at practice and the last to leave – Champions do Extra. They know that there no crowds lining that extra mile. When they are on that road they are alone.

Bonus Lesson – You Never Rest On Your Laurels.

The All Blacks do these things because champions do extra and all of these stems from having an understanding of sacrifice. Your drive to succeed must start with sacrifice because everything you get means you have given something else up. You have to want what you are working on so bad that you are willing to die for the cause. You have to be ready to give up things that most other people would never give up.


These are three ways that all blacks go about leaving a legacy. You have to be willing to do all of the little things, change your game up to stay on top, and always do the extra stuff others will not do. These are just three of the chapters in the book! There are so many golden nuggets in this book; it is a must-read for every athlete.
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