“…the part of something that is essential to its existence.”

Last summer and during the 2011 season,  a program called the Cardinal Core Corps was unveiled. It was intended to provide a regimen of specific exercises, specially designed to get you in optimum football playing condition.  And if you recall, we got pretty dang strong during August – didn’t we?

The primary goal of the “…Corps”  was to establish a conditioning routine, a work at your own pace kind of program. But, if you know anything about me, there is always a lesson within a lesson.  Call it coaching in the stealth mode.

So there is that one “core”, the physical power plant that resides within the center of your body.

Without a doubt, your core strength is a fundamental component in creating the opportunities for success through out your career as a student-athlete. Your core is the primary  source of strength and stability for everything you choose to accomplish and excel at regardless of the field of play.

But there is far  more to your “core” than just push ups and planks.

The“core” is also that emotional bond you create with one another as teammates.  It is this connection – the commitment you make to a cause bigger than your self – that forms the bedrock of selflessness.

It is this partnership with develop with one another that enables you to set aside what you personally want for what the team really needs.  The strength of this “core” overcomes that fear, the sense of personal vulnerability that comes with “giving it up” for others.

And then there is what resides in your “core” – the person you are, as well as, the person you are meant to become.

Any individual that is challenged to square up, commit to making the effort and strengthen their “center”, will inevitably focus inward during that process. It is through this self-reflection that you come to “see” what you are made of. It is only through the trials of  adversity that your character is revealed.  And once that character has emerged, soon, leadership will begin to bloom.

This aspect of the core – the center of your being –  directs your thoughts, chooses your words and guides your deeds.  It can become your trusted commander, a mirror image of your character, leading you to achievement, excellence and the fulfillment of purpose.

To be the absolute best versions of ourselves, as intended, all three of these aspects of “core” strength are needed in equal measure.  Working together in unison and in balance – heart, mind and body – we can become centered; the ideal position to play the game of life.


All that from some push-ups, planks and wall sits.  Kind of sneaks up on you, don’t it?

So, to get “there”, to where we are all meant to go, we will need to work on this year round, not just August to October.  (me too!)

To develop hearts, minds and bodies, takes time, effort and commitment.

Think of this as the Cardinal Leadership Team 2.0:

The Core Corps: heart, mind and body.

If you are up for it, and are willing to make the commitment, we can empower each other to be the best versions of ourselves.


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