Highly skilled athletes are not necessarily great role models in any way. The physical talent and ability required to succeed at sports on the highest level doesn't necessitate that the athlete be an intelligent, compassionate or moral person. There are hundreds of examples of professional athletes behaving badly and breaking the law. Children should look at their parents as role models instead of idolizing athletes.
Professional athletes train hard and get great results through discipline and determination. They are good role models as long as children and teenagers look mainly at their athletic performances and learn from them how to achieve success through hard work. When, however, professional athletes lead immoral lives, it is the parents' duty to help children understand the distinction between professional and personal life and learn only from the one that provides them with good moral values.
At their best, professional athletes make good role models for children, teens and adults. Successful professional athletes embody many traits that are applicable to other areas of life. Focus and discipline are key to achieving goals for everyone, whether it is at work or in personal areas in life. Their role as models of a healthy lifestyle is also important.
While some athletes are poor role models due to their egos and selfishness, others are strong role models to their communities. They spend their time when away from their sport giving back to their communities, donating time and money to causes that help the less fortunate; they also help underprivileged individuals and encourage them to play sports.