Posted on September 15 2016
Olympic silver medalist and Physiclo co-founder, Keeth Smart understands the importance of preparing for a competition. Keeth made it his mission to help many of the Rio athletes maximize their training for the Rio games by outfitting them with Physiclo's resistance technology.
We also sat down with several of the athletes including Team USA Field Hockey player, William Holt, to talk about resistance, a common theme in many athletes live's both on and off the competition floor.
Cheer him on at the North East Field Hockey Association Championships!
“How you do anything is how you do everything.”
Wise words from field hockey player William Holt.
“Whatever sport you pursue at an Olympic level, outside of big sports like soccer or basketball where you get paid millions of dollars to play it, you will always have to make sacrifices,” says Holt. “A sacrifice I had to make was when I decided to move to Belgium to play professionally. I’m 26, and I’m basically putting off a career. I’m putting off family, and those types of things to go after a dream I had when I was a kid.”
The first sports that Holt played were basketball and soccer around 4 years old. “My dad is from England and he has always been a huge soccer fan, so that is why I picked up the sport,” says Holt.
“I was on three different AAU basketball teams, an AAU soccer team and ran track, when field hockey found me,” recalls Holt. In grade school William Holt tried field hockey and his coach put him on the team because of ease at playing the sport due to his athletic ability.
“At the end of the season I was asked to try out for the under 16 national team and I was only 11 or 12 years old at the time,” says Holt. “I thought it was pretty cool although, I didn’t make the team. I hate not making things and hate being mad about not making things.” So William went back and practiced harder to get ready for his second season of field hockey.
“I made the team when I was 12 or 13 years-old. Then I made the under 21 team when I was 14 years-old and the U.S. Men’s National Team when I was 17 years-old,” says Holt. “By the end of high school I had a choice to make either play Division I basketball or play field hockey for the national team and go to a world cup. That’s when I decided to stick with field hockey.”
When we asked Holt how he was able to make such a decision, as an athlete who was talented in multiple sports, he said with a chuckle: “It’s such a random, weird, sport that nobody plays so someone’s got to play it, might as well be me!”
However, his dream to aim for the Olympics started at a much younger age. “In 1996 I watched the Olympic games with my dad on the coach and from that moment, it became all I ever wanted to do,” says Holt. “The chances of me playing in the Olympics are very small but it is there in my heart. So putting off these ‘adult’ things to pursue my dream is something that a lot of athletes have done. You can only play a sport for so long, travel and do all those things that come with the territory of committing yourself to a sport, so why not continue to do it?”
When we asked Holt who his mentor was, he said that there was one that stood out.
“The mentor that affected me the most was Ben Maruquin. He played in 1996 Summer Olympic Games from the United States. He was the director of the Ventura County High-Performance Training– The Red Devils,” says Holt. “He started coaching a bunch of the youth teams and I am from the same county. The majority of the U.S. Men’s National Team members come from that area and from his program. Ben has had a huge impact on me.”
When Holt was in college, he received the best advice that he continues to apply in his life today. “How you do anything is how you do everything,” says Holt. “How you keep your car for example- if your car is tidy that obedience can transition to how you handle everything else in your life. It really resonated with me because I’m very organized.”
This advice came from former Field Hockey legend, Justine Sowry- the goalkeeper for Australia and two world cup medal holder.
“How I am out on the field is how I am in my everyday life. If everything is all over the place and chaotic in your car or bedroom then that is probably how you are going to treat other aspects of your life, whether it is playing sports or being in the workplace,” says Holt. “When I heard this mentality it made me tighten up the bolts with what I do outside of training and I think a lot of that has transitioned into how I play. That is the motto I try to live by. Justine is a legend and having the opportunity to be around her for four years and learn from her was extremely valuable.”