Prep Success Blog

Up, Over & Down

by Josh Cordell on May 30, 2017 No comments

There are three types of relationships that you should have for a successful and balanced sports career. They are Up, Over & Down. I’ve seen so many young athletes miss out on what could be gained from, and achieved in their sport because they only have one or two of these three key relationships. I’ll explain the power and significance of each below, but first let me explain what I mean by Up, Over & Down. I believe that having several people who fit in each category is important, but for a healthy, maximized experience, it is vital to have at least one person in each category.
Up – Above you. Coach, mentor, more experienced competitor.
Over – Beside you. Teammate, partner, opponent.
Down – Below you. Athlete you coach, mentee, less experienced or younger competitor.


Up – Coach, mentor, trainer, a more experienced player that is better than you or playing at a higher level. Someone who would beat you in a game of one-on-one.
Over – Teammate, friend, rival, someone who you could play a competitive one-on-one game against.
Down – Lower level player, younger sibling, neighborhood kids, someone you would beat in a game of one-on-one.

Up – Someone who consistently beats you in match play. Coach, mentor, trainer, player that is better than you or playing at a higher level.
Over – Someone who a match could go either way against. Teammate, friend, rival, opposing teams.
Down – Someone you consistently beat in match play. Lower level player, younger sibling, neighborhood kids.

Up – A coach, mentor, trainer, someone who is faster than you.
Over – Training partner, teammate, workout buddy, rival, someone who if you raced it could go either way.
Down – A less experienced racer. A younger, slower competitor.

Why you need all three

Up – You need someone to help you, coach you and guide you. Examples: Someone who has achieved what you hope to achieve. Someone who has coached the level you want to be coached, someone who is doing the things you want to be able to do. Young athletes have room in their lives for several Ups. Parents, coaches, teachers, mentors, bosses and team captains are some of the natural fits for this position. A consistent Up can lead to a lot of growth for an athlete. Having a new coach each year as athletes move on to new teams and age groups makes sense, but to have a longstanding relationship with a mentor proves to be very healthy.

Over – A partner to train with, someone to compete against, a friend to grow with. This relationship is so crucial and can last a lifetime. A workout buddy, a sparring partner, a hitting partner, someone to play one-on-one against, someone to join you on your morning run. Having a consistent Over and ideally several Overs makes the sports experience something that is truly special and memorable.

Down – Completing the circle of life by giving. Many young athletes are only taught to take. Take a lesson, take my advice, take a lap… But it’s crucial for the development of solid citizens that they learn to give. You learn a lot from teaching. You need the balance of having someone who looks Up to you, it teaches you responsibility. How soon should you have a Down? As soon as as you become an Up. What I mean by that is that my three-year-old daughter would have a hard time finding a Down when it comes to her sports career right now. But my 15-year-old daughter is Up enough to have a down relationship. Younger siblings often are a build in Down, but if you don’t have them, you need to be intentional about finding a Down.

Let Prep Success Coach help you with the Up, Over & Down process – We’ll be an Up that’ll help you maximize your sports experience. We’ll help you with the tools and resources needed to utilize your Overs and to become the Up that is rewarded with a Down relationship. Let’s start working together to make your athletic experience the best it can be.

Contact Josh Cordell


Josh CordellUp, Over & Down

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