Highlights of the episode:

  • Why it’s still important to have face to face mentors for footy clubs
  • How difficult it is to teach punting to footballers
  • How much distance you can do with punting
  • Tips to kick long

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Interview Transcript

Jack: Next on the show we have Nathan Chapman, the founder of Prokick Australia, which are located all around Australia. In fact, Josh Growden is the Adelaide Coach, a representative of Prokick Australia. So, super excited to have him on. We’re going to discuss how footballers can develop their American football kicking if they want to work towards being a college athlete.

So, welcome, Nathan, and thanks for jumping onto the podcast, mate. 

Nathan: Thanks Jack. Appreciate it and nice to meet you, Mr. Williams. Nice to see you too, Josh.

Jack: Take us through Prokick Australia. When did you found the business? When did you start? 

Nathan: I think the idea stemmed maybe 2007. Finished an AFL career and still wanted to do something sport related. And I always felt like I could kick the ball. So, joined the punting game. Didn’t quite make it. I spent some time there in the States for a little while, didn’t quite make it, but I knew there was an avenue. I knew there was a number of people in Australia who could kick. And I just felt there was more opportunity for guys if they went about it the right way. And, obviously, some things that I did were good, but also probably not the right way to have longevity over there and understanding the system. So, I went about helping young men to get a spot at college, get them scholarships to universities, so they could get their degree and potentially go into pros after that. 

Josh: He’s being humble, Jack. I listened to that podcast you had with Kevin. And he said that Nathan was one of the best kicks he’s ever seen. And now I’ve seen it in person, at his age rooster 50–60 meters off a couple of steps. So, that’s quite impressive.

Jack: It was literally what popped up in my mind. I haven’t seen Nathan kick, but when you interview an expert like Kevin on the podcast, and he’s seen that many people kicking and he mentions yourself, you must be pretty good. Good technician. 

Talk us through, for the kids listening that want to develop their game either for Australian rules football, and then we’ll move into American punting in a second, but the AFL to start with. As a technician, was that something that was natural towards and that was a strength that you sharpened as your career progressed? Or was it something that you had to work on and put a lot of time into to develop?

Nathan: It was probably a bit of both. And maybe the environment that I was in. I grew up in a small country town in Coban Evan, country Victoria, population was 200. I believe I was here from maybe age six till ten and the youngest underage football program there was under eighteens. So, to play football as an eight-nine-year-old in there, you had to learn pretty quick, practice your skills, which I felt benefited me. A couple of years into that, until I realized I had to go and get my own football and just had to play, obviously loved it.

And then I think as I got a couple of years older, I actually moved into a town of Bendigo and then was playing under eighteens for three years. And then moved back to playing under twelves in the local school league and things like that. So, I had a chance to develop a different right. And it was a force of nature to be able to get my spot in the team. I just played the game at different levels and always been around and been encouraged to mix it with older guys and always seeing the different level and trying to chase that.

So, I loved kicking on my left foot. And that was born out of a really bad ankle injury to my right foot. Spent the whole off-season and season kicking on the left side, then just to develop my whole left side for a whole year. Maybe as a 14-year-old, 13–14-year-old. And then just fell in love with kicking.

And like Ben said before, it’s an expression of who we really are. For those who like to kick, it really can be an expression of who we are. We just enjoy it. And some people think it’s goal. There’s something that you just feel really connected to. Enter the long kicking competition as a young fellow and had to kick at top later.

That’s probably where it all started, right there. And then I never looked back. And so, then I tended to work on it a fair bit more, and it was just year after year after year, and it was a strength and that’s probably where it all began.

Jack: You mentioned the environment was something that helped you not only work on your craft, but also having those peers and people older than you to help. We’re surrounded by technology and information these days with smartphones, computers, and all the rest. How important is it to still have your face-to-face mentors, do you think, at football clubs?

Nathan: Absolutely. And again, there’s probably different versions of mentors too. And some are giving good information about, maybe, what’s needed from a skillset and improvement, technical point of view on summits. It’s about confidence and giving them the confidence to try different skills and then not worry about the failures along the way.

So, there’s probably different mentors along the way that build you up all around and build you towards a peak as being able to deliver the skill, but have the confidence to do it, have the confidence to get over, it’s not failure, but a bad kick. And I think there’s plenty of room for lots of people to enhance your own performance along the line.

Jack: You mentioned, after AFL you gave punting a go. How popular was it to make that decision at that time? How did you hear about taking on that feat? 

Nathan: A fellow goes pretty determined in my own mind to challenge myself in another area. I was 25. I felt like there was more from a sporting world. I’ve been a professional athlete. It was pretty hard to leave the AFL. I felt like I’ve just gotten into my true man’s strength. And that the body was just right. The guy was as strong as it ever was. But for certain reasons the football side didn’t work out and that was all I had to take.

And it took me a little while to go, ‘Okay, what’s next?’ I was certain that I needed to chase something and kicking a ball was something that I always enjoyed. Thought I was good enough at it. I’ve been practicing long enough for it. And I wanted to test myself and that’s when I started that journey to chase that, which was, in fact, a three-year journey kicking three to four times a week, without even knowing what the end result or goal was going to be.

I just knew that there was something there and I didn’t know how I was going to get there. I didn’t know how long it was going to take and I just kept at it. 

Jack: And now you’ve created a company from that experience. What did you love about America and the game, and punting itself?

Nathan: I felt like what it did was it made me think harder about the skill itself. And like I would say with a lot of things that you can sometimes do, if you do it long enough… Like driving a car, sometimes you just do it. And you can fall into a habit of… It’s not complacency, but it’s almost like you’ve been driving a car, it’s fun, but then you’ve got to go and learn to drive a rally car. And all of a sudden the driving that you do is really sharpened up into, ‘Well, what happens if I go around the corner at this speed? What if it’s gravel or bitumen or whatever?’ And all of a sudden, just like the kicking, you’ve got to put more attention into what you’re doing to get the best out of yourself.

And so, going back into punting, to know that in the punting world okay is not good enough. You may get three or four kicks per game. Coach is relying on you to do your job. Coaches get paid and keep their job, if you do a good job. And in the professional ranks, if you have a bad day, they’ll sack you and they will get someone else. So, your paying check’s on the line. And I often give this analysis to try and get my students to understand the importance of taking care with what you’re doing and not cutting corners.

And it’s the finer detail is imagine, if Buddy Franklin in his first ever two AFL games kicked two goals four and two goals six, and then was sacked and never played again. That’s the punting world. Have a bad game, they will replace you next week with another punter. Imagine, if the full-forwards of the League, if they had a bad day, would just be replaced next week and the teams could just bring someone on.

And if you did a good job, you’d stay until you didn’t. And if they didn’t, they would just bring someone in the next week. And that’s the industry. And so, it makes you from professional sense earn your money, but we’ve got to try and develop young men into understanding that’s the world they’re getting into, so that they’ve got to take a fair bit of care with it.

Jack: And you mentioned, that exercise, hopefully, would develop a bit of urgency in these young boys and girls learning the craft. It is different because in football, obviously, there’s so many other things that are going on. It’s not as specialized as punting. How hard can it be to teach footballers, now that they are committed to punting, to now apply themselves to one skillset?

Nathan: Well, it’s a really interesting point because the college game, in a sense, is now changed. Where yes, we’ve got to teach the spiral. The Aussie drop punt has come into the game so much so, that you might kick an Aussie drop punt 65% of the time at college. There are kicks where they might do a forward tumbling kick, kick it end over and forward, so it tries to bounce and roll on.

So, over the last maybe seven or eight years the drop punt has come into our game a lot, American game. And because it’s what used to be, you would kick it high to the returner trying to catch it. Now, the games turned into kick it away from the returner, kick it away from the guy who’s trying to catch it and run it back. So, having an ability to, when playing Aussie rules, to have a good fluid kick, have an ability to place the ball where you need to, it’s certainly has helped our guys get more approaches from colleges about what your skill sets are.

Yes, we need to kick a spiral. And then it’s very difficult to change the muscle memory with the Aussie rules. Some guys have a natural ability to kick really high. And some, it’s just about how far they can kick it. And so, when you do a spiral, generally, in AFL, if you’ve got to do a spiral, it’s about distance.

So, teaching somebody to hold the ball on a different angle, hold it four or five inches higher than where they usually hold it from a drop height, takes time. And so again, we’ve got to go back to some pretty basic fundamentals to teach him what it feels like to kick the ball not, let’s say, just above your ankle height, but actually now up above your knee. And so, you’re swinging and kicking up versus kicking wrong.

It takes a while for them to feel comfortable with it, but once they get it… And again, sometimes it’s natural. Sometimes we’ve literally got to get them to stand and kick over a tree or a light pole. Once they physically see something in the air, they know what to do. But if you just have an open field, they’d go and revert back to the habit and that’s what they’ve probably learned playing Aussie rules.

Jack: And for the developing footballers listening in under the age of, let’s say, 18, boys and girls, what sort of distances have you seen people develop in a year’s time when they’ve dedicated themselves and given it everything they can? What’s possible?

Nathan: It’s a different ball. It’s got a different sweet spot. So, the American ball’s probably got a 50 cent size sweet spot on the middle of it. It’s quite corny and sharp on the end. So, it tends to react quite harshly if you get it wrong. One of the main things that we do initially is to try and understand if they do understand how to maximize power or where are they getting their power from? Are they using the lever properly? Are they kicking with or without any efficiency from the mechanical and the body posture?

Because in the American football you’ve only got two steps. You’ve got to catch it, for a right footer, catch it. You’ll step with your right foot. And then you’ll jump into your left foot, which is your plant foot. And then you’ll kick it. So, one of the interesting scenarios is guys who feel like they’ve got to take many steps to gain some momentum and then try and kick off with it. But in the reality of the game that doesn’t allow you to do it. So, we’ve got to strip that back to mechanics and efficiency from kicking off no steps and being balanced and trying to work on your core and your posture and so forth. And then transition that into kicking off one step and then kicking off two steps. And seeing the difference. You’ve got a true representative of someone who’s done it in Josh. You might be able to ask him a little bit later.

Once you learn how to use your posture and your core and your plant foot to gain that extra power, we like to say, you’re going to get more power with less effort. And then all of a sudden the kicking and the striking of a football for distance becomes a lot easier. And if you’re relaxed and calm, you don’t have to try as hard. Then if you don’t have to try as hard, you don’t step as long. And if you don’t step as long, you won’t lose as much power if you can stay compact in that.

So, there’s certainly a development side from a technical point of view, but also from the mind to understand that it’s okay to take those steps and it’s okay to take shorter steps in your game, so that you can be compact and be more efficient.

Mark: Nathan, I need to ask you a question. I’ve never been able to kick a top in my life. I probably max out at about 45 meters ever. How do you teach people kicking long? We’re talking AFL now. What were the one or two, or two or three things that you’d say, ‘Oh, you’re probably doing this’? Should I hold the ball out further than the drop punt? The angle you’re holding it on, never being consistent? And even when I kick a nice torpedo, it only goes 45 meters. What would be the reasons?

Nathan: I would say from a torpedo point of view… And I’ll just clarify this by asking, have we got a big run-up?

Mark: As long as you’d like. As long as you think is important. So, let’s say, we’re going to kick a long distance competition. What is the distance you should run up to get the effective or the best result you could? 

Nathan: Okay. If you ask anyone and if you ask me, I would say you got about three steps, that’s all you need from a pallet. Yes, you can generate a little bit more leg speed. You might get more leg speed, but you might lose efficiency because your stepping pattern gets out of control and changes some angles. If you want a longer kick, a lot of guys probably don’t understand the kicking height. So, if we talk about from a kicking height, we’ve got to work on the ball being on the same angle as our foot, when we make contact with our kicking foot and it starts to flip up. We want the ball to be on that angle as well as our foot to be on that angle, when they cross paths. And if you were to say, the ball will come off your foot at a 45 degree angle, no matter where you kick it from. So, if you’ve got the ball and, let’s say, a perfect trajectory is that for a long kick.

Josh: For a long drop punt? Kevin Ball was on here and he says 30 degrees is optimal trajectory to anyone playing at home. 

Nathan: Long drop punt.

Josh: So, people might think 45 is optimal, but that doesn’t incorporate spin rates and air resistance. I mean, think of it like a trajectory, but for a drop punt, he found that 30 degrees. So, I think we better say it’s a bit higher. You need to get that angle, you need to go a bit higher. 

Nathan: Yeah, correct. So, we’ve also got our three steps. For power I like to make contact when your plant foot is flat on the ground and not on its toes, when heels are off. There are some other factors. If you’re leaning too far back, that won’t work. But it’s about, if the ball height on contact, the ball angle on contact are the same, and then our follow-through is, and again, I’m giving some rough numbers, the follow-through goes at 45 degrees as well, sort of through the same angle as the ball is going to come out.

So, we would generally say that we’ve got three kicks spirals. One is a really low spear and kick. That’s got to combat wind, and we need to keep it really low and not let it get controlled by the wind. We’ve got our longest kick, that is a mid-range and that’s a long spiral with a little bit of hang time. So, let’s say, we’ll call them, kick one is a low one. Kick two is a middle one. And kick three is a really, really high one, but hang time.

We would say, for our lowest kick the contact point’s maybe halfway up your shin. So, when your foot swings through, it’s already on the up, contact point’s about halfway up your shin of your plant leg. And you want to follow through to about waist height. You don’t need to follow through higher. You want energy down through with the ball. For our, what we call it, our mid-height kick, it’s actually the longest one we’ve got, we want to make contact just below the knee cap and we want to follow through to our shoulder height only. It goes more up and out and follow-through is up and out. And then for our third kick, it’s actually making contact above the knee cap. And that’s when we follow through above our head.

So, if we think our three angles. Really low kick, ball’s pointed down low, because that’s the same angle of their foot when it’s swinging through. When we want our second range kick, our foot’s follow-through’s a little bit further, so then we change the ball angle again. And for our high one, our foot follows through even further. And that’s when we drive up. So, I would say, make sure the angle of the ball’s the same, angle pointed down as your connection point.

Josh: Choco, if you want, you can go on my Instagram. I just made a video tonight of how to kick a top, based off of knowledge I learned from Chappy when I came through as a punter.

Mark: I’ve got no idea how to do it. So, I’ll just leave it. It’s probably swing again, maybe five. 

Nathan: It should be more, mate. Get over the zone. 

Josh: I watched a game against the Bulldogs. They had 15 guys in the defensive 50, trying to stop a forward entry, like inside 50 kick. You just have to see them rip off Barrel, as opposed to trying to pick off a forward.

Mark: I’m sure, if I could kick him, I would have. And now tailing off to the right, I won’t be doing anything. 

Nathan: If they spin off, go up and they shape and then they come down on their bum and they travel right to left for right foot up. That’s just because the nose is too far pointed down, you flicked it up. It’s going off its axis. It’s trying to spin. And then it goes around. 

Mark: I love this stuff. As we’ve all said, we learn off each other. This is sitting here listening to this. That’s pretty damn good. 

Nathan: And the thing is, three things will happen with a spiral. And to Josh’s point, in the AFL. If we go back a step to the NFL, you’ve got to kick it 60 meters, and you’ve got to put it in a 10-yard box to keep your job. Off two steps, and you’ve got 1.2 seconds to catch it and kick it. So, if the skillset can be developed for professionals to be that accurate with that type of distance, and when I say 60 meters or a 60-yard kick, that’s not including the minus 15 that you step. So, if we’re talking 75 meters, then we’re certainly clear in the zone area. We’re putting it on the wind, so you could consistently put it on the wind within a 10-yard box, given any wind condition, then I think it’s a valuable kick to have. And really, if you set up, you’ve got the one that flips out to the right and tickles over, and you’ve got the one that you drop inside and it goes 35 yards to the right, where you can cover those three spots. And there you go.

Josh: That’s true. I think, Choco, you and I am a coach, and I didn’t have a great kick, but now it has honestly become quite automatic to kick a top. And I’ve got skinny legs, but just to get the technique right, and it’s pretty crazy. 

Mark: It’s fun. It’s wonderful to learn that insight. And there’s no reason that anyone can’t do it.

Josh: Right. But I think a lot of it you can apply into a drop punt as well. 

Mark: Oh, I’m sure. 

Nathan: The power that we try to get for the NFL kick, certainly the basis is the same. Yet, different angle for the ball, different drop height, et cetera. But the power you can get, again I’ll categorically say as a mid-forties guy, to get down your Achilles. Just by swinging your leg and having pretty good mechanics or efficiency, no stress whatsoever about kicking 60 meters off one step. Just putting the ball in the right spot and swinging and making that connection point. It’s like a lot of things. Go on the bench press. If you get your leavers in the wrong spot, that bar’s heavy. You get your technique and your posture right, and then it’s a lot easier.

And that’s not easy. It’s hard. When we do the lessons, I feel like for kicking, it’s like swimming or golf. It’s not necessarily a short program kicking, it’s almost like, if you really want to get into it, it’s a lifelong skill you can keep getting better at, because there are so many kicks and there is the opposite side of the body. I just think it’s like karate. You just keep going. You just keep getting better and better and better, but there’s so much to learn.

Mark: In NFL can you kick boomerangs and those sort of balls or people don’t want to do those? Or you kick the wobbly ones and the things that we muck around in AFL?

Nathan: Yeah, absolutely. But now as it’s coming to the game.

Mark: Can you make the ball float? Like you can at the footy? 

Nathan: Yeah, you can. But again, the time and place and you’ve got to do it right. And if you don’t do it right, and it doesn’t go far enough, it comes down and…

Mark: In rugby, done that. With my partner that float the ball, so that it’s a lot harder than sitting at home, watching it. You think, ‘Why didn’t they catch it?’ That making the ball move around in the air. 

Nathan: Yeah, it can get really tricky. 

Jack: How much time do you think they need to dedicate? For those 13-year-olds listening and thinking, ‘Geez, I might want to change the AFL game, like you guys are saying. And in five years when I’m peaking, I’m going to kick over these zones and be the first to do it and change the game.’ How much time, do you reckon, these kids need to be putting in to master this craft for the AFL football? 

Nathan: You’re asking me, if they want to kick a torpedo?

Jack: No, the precision that you’re talking about that American punter, obviously, not turned professional, but they can do it pretty close to that, so they can actually bring it into an AFL game without being dragged. They’ve got confidence in their ability to deliver. 

Mark: Justin used to do it. He’d kick it out. He’d do it every time and he’d do it pretty damn well. And he’d kick it out of the back of the zone.

Josh: I’ll just say that it’s something that you can just incorporate into your fun kicks. And it’s not that it’s taking it away from your drop punts. It’s just adding an extra kick to your repertoire. So, if they’re dedicating a bit of time, every time they go kick a footy, and as they get older and stronger, they’re going to get better at it. Learn the right way, learn a good way of doing it. You just keep progressing, you’re always developing. 

Nathan: And also, where do you want to take your kick level to? How far do you want to go with it? At what level do you still enjoy it and it doesn’t become an obsession? But it is the little things. And although there are so many things that can happen in a game and Aussie rules, at different angles and everything. Like I said, you never ever do two of the same thing in American football. The ball snapped in a different area, you got to catch it, your body moves, there’s different wind conditions. 

We still always remember to bring, no matter your skill skillset, when you come to us, we take you back and make sure you can learn the mechanics for efficiency and be more powerful. Because from an AFL point of view, if you can be really powerful of one step and you can harness the power of your core and your plant foot, and if you strike the ball better, you got a quicker kick. It gets to its target quicker. If you can learn to do your kicking off to the three steps, when you grab an AFL ball, and be efficient when you release it. And if you use your mechanics, when you strike it, then all of a sudden, if you can release the ball quicker and you can get it there quicker, then what you’ve actually opened up is you’ve opened up more options.

So, if you’ve got a teammate 25 meters away and a defender is 13 meters off them, your old five steps style, slow kick, low efficiency might take, I’m pulling numbers on you, two seconds to get there, which is enough time for that defender to come in. If you’re efficient with your kick and you kick it off less steps and are efficient at it, and kick with more power and less effort, and it gets there quicker, then that defendant can be closer and still not get there. So, what it does it takes a little bit less panic out of, ‘Should I take that kick?’ or ‘Oh, no, I don’t want to do it because someone’s in range to intercept it.’ And what it does it gives you more options, because you’re more confident and you’ll get it there quicker, less height, all those types of things.

Mark: Western Bulldogs need you right now. They’re 7 goals 16, just saying, mate.

Nathan: They’re pretty big sticks.

Mark: They’re kicking like I do. They certainly try to take away their time all the time as to build it up, to make them panic almost to the point where they are over the top and then bring it back a little bit, but always pushing the edge of where that time that they’ve got to make the decision, get all their feet in their hands and everything set and then bang it.

So, don’t just kick the ball, kick it hard. I want them to kick it to the spot. Not just love it too. Anyone can love it. We want to make sure that the distance or the time that it takes to get there is very, very short.

Nathan: Yeah, absolutely. And we’re going off kicking but, like you said, it’s reading the player about what you’re going to do. What’s your exit plan? And if you know where you’re going to go before you get it, and you can run in and go, ‘I know what my options are, and if I get it right now, what am I going to do?’ 

Mark: If you watch the experts in soccer, they see the ball come and then they know where all their opponents are and then they put their eye back on the ball. And for footballers to be able to pick that up and basically map in their minds where everyone is, it slows it down for the most, for sure. 

Nathan: Which means you can get your body into position because you already know your exit point and you go, ‘Well, if it comes to me now, I know I’ve got to shape in and balance left, because I’m going to kick left, if I got it right now.’ Absolutely. Less time, less confusion, less panic. And then you kick it efficiently and all of a sudden it creates time, and that’s why they look so calm. The good guys look so calm when they’ve got it, because they know what’s going on.

Mark: I’ll put it in now, but I think there’re four things that get people drafted. If you can’t kick, you can’t play, as far as I’m concerned. So, we’re talking to coaches or we’re talking to players or parents, if they’re listening. You’d better spend a lot of time on kicking. I love the fact that you can improve people’s kicks. If they spend the time with experts that know how to shortcut it. That’s what Josh is doing. That’s what Ben was doing before and yourself. You find the experts and it takes them a lot less to get to where they want to get to. 

Nathan: Yeah, absolutely. There you go. Listen and put the time in. We love it and we can talk about it all day. And if you want to learn, we’ll give you all of our attention because we’re sponges. 

Mark: We enjoy seeing people succeed. Tomorrow night we’re playing Essendon. And if I see a good kick inside 50, that hits someone, I get all the joy. That’s what it’s about. That was good. 

Jack: That’s a good segue, Chap. Thanks for jumping on, mate. And Choco’s ready to roll, I reckon. So, we’ll get him on. But for those that want to get in touch with your Prokick Australia, what’s the best place to follow yourself? Where can they find you?

Nathan: Well, I look after the Instagram Prokick Australia, I look after some Twitter and every now and again I look at the website and I’ll drop a few pictures along the way. But nathan@prokickaustralia.com is probably not a bad way to start.

And, to be honest, I encourage anyone who’s even ever thought about coming down for a kick, there’s no pressure, it’s actually a lot of fun. But it’s certainly changed a lot of lives. We’ve almost done 997 scholarships to college, which is probably over $45 million worth of college education fees for families. And it’s, again, a good pathway. If you’re interested, make a phone call and have a kick. And if it’s not for you, I will tell you. But you just never know. 

Mark: Tell me, Nathan. How many people that wanted to be AFL footballers that didn’t quite make it, went on and were like, ‘Well, what about that?’ I understand that’s Josh. But there’s probably a whole lot of people out there thinking, ‘Geez, I wish I was an AFL footballer.’ But, wait a minute, there is a whole new career for them that they don’t know about. 

Nathan: Yeah, absolutely. And listen, you might not have to be demoted to be able to run out of the game. You just might be a good kid from the country, it doesn’t matter. If you can kick a football, whether they teach you to play with it.

There’re many stories of young 18-year-olds, 19-year-olds who didn’t even go TAC and weren’t selected anyway, that could kick a football. And then we’ve literally had to train them up, also on the mental side of it, to be able to handle the pressures that they’re going into. And within a 12 month period of going from, ‘Oh, my name’s Jack and I came to Prokick to have a lesson’, join the program and within 12 months they’re playing a new sport for the first time and their first ever game is in front of 105,000 people. Unlike Josh’s first game. We got literally guys who’s first ever… Kevin Johnson, two-year rookie at Melbourne, didn’t get a game, got injured, came down, had a kick and then he played four years at Ohio state in the NFL now. But he’s average credit at Ohio state was 104,000 people. They changed their lives because they loved to kick a football.

Josh: I do just want to say. I didn’t have a massive kick, Choco, you can attest to that. Maybe it’s slightly above average. Ended my AFL career not where I wanted, but to have this opportunity to punt absolutely changed my life. And I honestly owe so much to Nathan.

Mark: How did you end your career in AFL? Let’s be serious.

Josh: I got delisted.

Mark: You got a broken leg and all that stuff. That didn’t help, did it?

Josh: Wasn’t ideal. So, punting was pretty perfect. 

Mark: That’s what I’m saying. Strange things happen in footy. And if you take this other opportunity, why not? I’m so proud of people like yourself who’ve gone on and found something else. Good on you.

Nathan: I love that because you’ve got a second option. There’s nothing worse than stressing out that one thing is your only option in life. And if it doesn’t work out, what is there next? This is really so much stress from people thinking, ‘Well, what if AFL doesn’t work out?’ And they go, ‘Actually, I’ve got something else to do.’ The amount of stress that comes off and go, ‘Hey, I’ve got options.’ And they start to smile again.

You’d be surprised at how many guys come to us from an AFL/VFL level, not getting a game in the senior team, calm down, realize that this is an option. And we actually say, ‘Can you just now go back?’ We tease them a little bit and go, ‘Now that you know this is an option, can you go and play the rest of the AFL/VFL footy season with effervescence and confidence? Can you take a hang of this week? Actually, I want to see a barrel.’ They go back and love the game again. They go back and then start playing senior football and we never see them. It’s literally a weight off their shoulders to know there’s options. Go for it, if you love what you do.

Jack: That’s been a consistent message all night, which is a good one. Thanks, mate. Thanks for jumping on. And we’ll add your website in the show notes.

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