Social Media has transformed our society, and this impact is felt heavily by student athletes. It’s impact can be profoundly positive or profoundly negative depending on how social media is used by students. Below are some tips for student athletes to ensure that their presence on social media does not negatively impact their team, playing time, or potential recruitment.
- Realize what you represent. First and foremost you represent yourself and your family. But you also represent your school, your team, your community, your teammates and your coaches. Think about what you are posting and make sure it accurately represents those things in the way that you would want it to.
- Do not post anything degrading. Whether it is about your teammates, coaches, opponents, officials, or anyone else, do not post things that can be hurtful or harmful to others. These types of posts can hurt team chemistry, create resentment between teammates, programs, schools, and they can negatively impact your recruitment. Keep everything you’re posting on social media positive.
- If you have to think twice about whether or not it’s a good idea to post something, sleep on it. It’s easy to get caught up in emotions or the heat of the moment and say something that you later regret. If you find yourself about to hit send on a social media post and you think “maybe I shouldn’t”, take the night to sleep on it and see if you still think it’s a good idea when you wake up. If you’re still not sure whether posting something is a good idea, the answer is typically no.
- Keep your social media profiles private so they can only be seen by those close to you. This still isn’t fool proof, and in this day in age with the technology we have (including screenshots) it doesn’t take long for what you thought was private information to be shared, but at times it can keep things you don’t want to be seen by the entire world from getting out there to everyone.
- Don’t let this happen to you (see Tweet below). College coaches want to see a level of maturity out of their recruits. If you’re being recruited by a college, you’ve clearly worked hard at your craft to get where you are. Don’t give a college coach a reason to question your maturity by posting or reposting something negative. In doing so, you may be costing yourself a hard-earned scholarship with the click of a button.