NEVER GOOD ENOUGH: 3 X Olympian and Gold Medalist Dominique Dawes


ATTENTION ALL COACHES: There is more to being a winner than simply coming in first.

There is a price to pay if you want to be the anything. Often times the price will be extreme and it’s only with time and perspective that we can truly evaluate our experience and assess its impact, good and bad, on our lives.

In this powerful conversation, Dominique and I discuss her life experience in gymnastics as she climbed to the very top of her sport. We discuss her personal drive for perfection, the relentless focus on fundamentals, the extreme rigors of training and the suffering and sacrifices that were made along the way.

In addition to this, Dominique and I also discuss the “win at all cost” culture that exists in many sports (especially in competitive gymnastics) and the role coaches play in this process. We go back and forth discussing the balance that must be struck between the importance of winning and the importance of the positive experience coaches should be providing for their athletes.  

Dominique is on a mission to transform the culture of gymnastics with the goal of not only producing champions but, more importantly, healthy happy athletes as well.

LESSON FOR LEADERS/COACHES: There is more to being a winner than just coming in first

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Notable Moments

  • Focus is a skill -8:30

  • Perfect is the enemy of great - 10:00

  • Gymnastics could open the door for many opportunities for me - 13:00

  • The day after my first Olympics I went to the gym to train-18:45

  • I loved when other competitor would come to the raised my game - 20:00

  • Talent can be a curse - 21:00

  • My best team I was on (1996) put aside their egos for the team goal.- 22:00

  • Positive coaching made a big difference - 28:00

  • 96 Olympic Coach made us feel the impossible was possible- 33:45

  • Abusive coaching is unnecessary to produce the type results you seek - 44:50

  • There are three types of coaches; Romantics, Fanatics and a Romantic -48:00

  • Winning means doing the best you can - 55:50

  • WATCH...HBO Sports Documentary on John Wooden - 58:30