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Money Smart Athlete Blog

The aim of the Money Smart Athlete Blog is to provide athletes worldwide with the tools to become money smart and help them make savvy financial decisions. We created this blog to transmit and share the knowledge we have accumulated as financial and business advisors during the past two decades.

Entrepreneurship

Athletes Who Succeeded as Entrepreneurs

Without a doubt, entrepreneurship has completely reshaped the traditional business landscape with innovative start-ups transforming work as we know it, creating a new meaning for business success. Entrepreneurship has also had an impact on the world of sports. We see great professional athletes making a transition from sports into the world of business, with entrepreneurship now being a significant part of the modern athletes’ mindset, and consequently redefining their lives. With the athletic career usually being more volatile and short-lived, relative to a career in any other industry, athletes need to find ways to safeguard their financial stability after retirement from sports, meaning that they need to shift their focus from how to spend to how they can build with their money. There are numerous success stories of elite athletes who have gone on to have successful business careers as startup founders and innovators, in fields outside of sports. 

Editorials

August 2022 Editorial: The Athlete Entrepreneur

In an ever-changing business environment, the conventional traditions of business are being redefined, with start-ups and entrepreneurs revolutionizing the economy. Elite athletes are no exception to this entrepreneurial transition. Notable sports names including David Beckham, Magic Johnson and Venus Williams have chosen to shift their focus to the world of business, with successful business careers as startup founders and innovators, safeguarding their financial stability after retirement from sports. There is no doubt that throughout their sports career, athletes cultivate various transferable skills and traits which could be applied to the business world, allowing them to become successful entrepreneurs.

Student-Athletes, The Athlete's Brand

How College Athletes can commercialize their Name, Image and Likeness (NIL)

The right to publicity, which is a right protected by law, gives any individual the exclusive right to license the use of any distinct aspect of their identity for commercial promotion. Through the use of this right, athletes who were traditionally paid just to compete in their respective sport, could create an extra revenue stream through licensing the use of their Name, Image and Likeness (NIL) for commercial purposes. Nowadays the development and commercial exploitation of an athlete’s brand has become an integral part of their career, allowing them to monetize their on-field success in the long term, even after their playing days are over.

Student-Athletes

The College experience as a student-athlete

As a college student you may think that student-athletes have it so easy in college, by being admitted with lower academic achievements and having a support network while in college which includes academic mentors, tutors, coaches, and advisors. Even though all these may be true, is that the whole picture?

Student-Athletes

International student-athletes and the relocation factor

A great number of athletes will need to relocate during their careers, either to a different state/region or different country. The situation is similar for foreign student-athletes who move to the United States to combine academics and sports.  Approximately 12% of NCAA division I students are foreign students, as when it comes to fusing higher education with sports, the US is second to none. There is no other educational system in the world which offers the opportunity to compete on an almost professional level, playing alongside the future protagonists of professional sports, while at the same time working towards your undergraduate degree.

Editorials

July 2022 Editorial: Student-Athletes – Financial and emotional challenges

Student-athletes are predominantly an American concept. Becoming a professional athlete through college sports is considered the conventional and “right” way. Talented high school seniors are scouted and courted by colleges. They then have to prove that they are pro material in order to be offered a professional contract; at least some of them. In fact, fewer than 2% of them end up turning pro. Nonetheless, student-athletes are considered some of the most privileged people on campus. In some aspects they are. They become recognizable, popular and people line up to watch them compete. But how “privileged” are they, really?

Financial Literacy

Athletes, Wealth and Money

When athletes, after years of hard training, finally gain professional status through earning a place to compete in top sports events or through signing a playing contract, they need to be prepared to manage the money they will subsequently earn. Through the Money Smart Athlete Blog, we have thoroughly addressed the potential pitfalls professional athletes should avoid during their careers, as also the most efficient ways to manage their money in order to attain financial freedom.

Economic Environment, Financial Literacy

Athletes: Investment options for 2022

Halfway through 2022, it has become impossible to scroll through social media and news pages and not encounter the terms “recession”, “inflation”, “bear market” and other similar takes, expressing negative sentiment on the state of the world economy. It’s no secret that while the world economy is still strong, the signs of a looming recession become more prevalent by the day with big names such as JP Morgan’s Jamie Dimon talking about an “economic hurricane on the horizon”.

Economic Environment, Financial Literacy

Athletes and Investing: Inflation and its implications on your investments

As discussed in last week’s article, athletes strive for financial freedom – which is all about having the resources to afford their desired lifestyle. In many cases, this financial freedom is attained through investing – as investing can eventually make your money work for you. Investment can be defined as committing capital or funds to different types of assets with the expectation that you will generate a gain or profit in the future. However, there are several factors that can negatively impact athletes’ investment; one such factor is inflation. Inflation is the rate of increase in prices over a period of time which means it can affect the value of future returns, deeming it a critical factor when making investment decisions.

Financial Literacy

Athletes and investing: A simple guide on how to start

The great desire to achieve financial freedom- which can be interpreted as having the financial resources to afford the lifestyle you wish- can be met by making your money work for you. Investing is one of the key ways to achieve this desire since it allows you to grow your wealth by generating additional income streams to support your lifestyle.

Financial Literacy

Investments: Ending the short-termist mentality of Athletes

The spending habits of many athletes render them unable to save and invest as much as they should, while still active. Approximately 25% of NFL players report financial difficulties in the first year after retirement and, within two years from their last game, 78% of all NFL players are divorced, bankrupt, or remain unemployed. The real issue is not their spending patterns per se, but rather their approach to money and their failure to realize the implications of their current behavior towards their finances upon their long-term financial well-being.

Mental Health

Teenagers, mental health and sports

Last week we discussed the complex relationship between athletes and social media vis-à-vis mental health. Teenagers are particularly vulnerable since their upbringing and reality are now fused with social media. The damage has been of such extent that there are teenagers out there who want to have surgery in order to adjust their looks to Instagram filters; an absurd sort of surrealism. Despite the obvious correlation between social media and mental health problems, social networking platforms are but one of the factors driving the current mental health epidemic. The coronavirus pandemic didn’t help either.

Mental Health

Athletes, mental health and social media

Social media are online platforms that help you connect with people from all over the world, upload family pictures and like your friends’ vacation photos. You can find people from all over the world who share your interests and follow your favourite athletes. There is, however, the flip side to all that which we’d rather not talk about that much; up until the moment it affects us. Bullying, body- shaming, hate, abuse, racism, sexism and a host of other -isms have crept their way into the day-to-day reality of social media.

Mental Health

The growing problem of mental health

Mental health has been at the forefront of discussions around the world for a while now, particularly because, according to the World Health Organisation, mental health conditions are on the rise, with possible contributing factors being the increasing use of social media and the COVID-19 pandemic.

Editorials

May 2022 Editorial: Putting mental health on the front page

Regarded as a taboo until recently, discussions on mental health have certainly become mainstream in the past few years. Several high-profile athletes have opened up about their struggles including the much-debated Osaka saga. It’s hard to persuade people that athletes with their celebrity status and millions of dollars deserve sympathy, but the reality is that neither talent nor money guarantee mental stability.

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