WEEK #37: GABRIELLA T.
Please tell us a little bit about yourself.
Hi! My name is Gabby Tang and I’m currently in second year at McMaster studying Mathematics and Statistics. My parents signed me up in taekwondo and swimming as a child, but I fell in love with basketball and decided to pursue it. I played for four years competitively and coached at a girl’s house league for two years. I also joined the Lead Thru Sport Youth Advisory Board this past year. I think the reason I chose basketball was because of the teamwork, strategy, and positive environment it had. As I’m growing older, and looking back I realize how much sport has affected my life and how fortunate I was to be encouraged to play. Basketball has taught me so much more about life than how to do a layup and dribble. Outside of sport, I love to play the piano and sing, ride my bike, and cook!
What qualities of a leader do you appreciate most? Why?
There are so many types of leadership out there it is important to pinpoint the exact criteria. But I think most importantly, leaders inspire and motivate others to better themselves. Leaders are humble and show the way not by words but by their attitudes and actions. What I most appreciate is that leaders demonstrate how minimal actions can ripple huge change. Make sure you thank the people who inspire you, it means the world to them!
What would you tell a girl who is thinking of dropping out of sport?
I wish I stayed in sport longer; I don’t think I appreciated it until much later. It is such a good way to destress, stay fit, and learn life skills. Being a part of a team is so special, and with prioritization and time management you can juggle school, work, and the rest of life with sport. You can do anything you put your mind to, you just have to have the dedication and passion to continue doing what you love!
What advice do you have for parents, coaches or sport administrators to encourage or improve sport for females?
Your job is to support and create a safe and loving environment for sport! Each player is different, and you just have to find a balance of challenging them as well as supporting them through failures. Sports are not only physically challenging but mentally as well. Teach players how to persevere through losses and make it a learning opportunity. Listen to your team, if they are telling you that something isn’t working, don’t dismiss them; instead, listen and try to find a new strategy. It can be really hard to speak up to your superiors, so when one does, don’t look at it as an attack but a chance to work together to be successful. Sport teaches skills that the players will carry with them for the rest of their lives, I know I definitely do! So keep up the great work!!