The shift from high school to college is a big one. Throw playing a collegiate sport in and it can add a lot to your plate. It can seem intimidating but this is an exciting time, and one you'll never forget. Let's go through some ways to make that transition successful and easy.
Be prepared to work hard over the summer. Find people to play with and practice as much as you can. Follow your lifting and conditioning program and ask as many questions as you need. When you join a new team as a freshman, being in shape, and showing that you prepared for your fitness testing makes a good impression. It shows that you care, that you trained, and that you are ready to be apart of the team.
Typically, your college workouts are going to be different than your high school training programs. Expect a raise in intensity and a challenge but don't be intimidated. If you follow the program and work hard you will be prepared.
Reach out to other in-coming freshman and make some new friends. Yes, you are going through a lot of change, but so are the other in-coming recruits. Talk about your workouts, your classes, and get to know each other. It will make the transition smoother and you will find comfort going to a new place. You will also have a person to lean on during your first weeks of practice.
Don't forget to focus on your academics. Your freshman year you will learn a whole new set of time-management skills. Take advantage of picking your classes and your times. Prepare for busy days of practice, classes, and game-days. You do not have a lot of control when it comes to practice schedule and games days, but picking your classes as a freshman you can find the right times that work for you.
If you haven't decided on a major, take classes on topics you think you will want to major in. Being happy academically and doing something you enjoy that interests you makes you better in your sport. It relieves a stress that you don't need. Learn about each class and make them work with your schedule.
If you have any questions, ask a current teammate. They have been in your shoes and they understand how you are feeling. It may seem like simple questions but odds are they were probably asking the same one's going into their first year. It also builds that connection and brings you closer to your soon to be teammates.
Take your summer seriously. Build those healthy habits that will make you stronger, make you a better athlete, and a reliable teammate.
This is an exciting time. Be prepared to work hard knowing it will all pay off! Nerves will happen and you won't be the only one to have them. Just remember you are there for a reason. Be ready to compete and understand that being a student-athlete is a honor, you worked hard for it.