Jack here, and today I'm excited to release my interview with professional soccer player and KickDeck founder, Skylar Thomas.
First off, Skylar is a great guy; fun, relaxed and extremely friendly. He's also engaged, thoughtful and his story is one I have wanted to share since I started our interviews on CPLFever.
In fact, I have been wanting to interview Skylar now for a very long time. He first caught my attention when he played for CPL team, Valour FC and then more recently as the founder behind the amazing product – KickDeck a valuable tool for young footballers looking to take their training and game to the next level.
What Is KickDeck?
For those of you who are unfamiliar with KickDeck, KickDeck is your personal trainer in a deck of cards. By using the deck (shuffle, deal, and train through 4 different categories) you can build your own custom workouts that will unlock your full potential.
Skylar Thomas Interview Highlights
During this interview that lasted about an hour, we chat to Skylar about:
- His upbringing and how he developed his love for soccer
- His current season with the Pittsburgh Riverhounds
- How he developed his entrepreneurial spirit and how he ended up founding KickDeck
- How be balances being a professional athlete and entrepreneur running a highly successful business
- What his day looks like as a professional footballer
- Mindset and how it's helped him in everyday life
- Advice for young athletes who aspire to go pro
- And of course, the always fun rapid fire questions where we get to know our guests on a more personal level!
Skylar Thomas has an incredibly fascinating story and one that we are so excited to share with you today. Some of my favourite moments of the interview have to do with his mindset and how he developed a great attitude that has served him well not only in professional soccer but also as an entrepreneur.
When you hear him speak about his passion and commitment to helping youth athletes first through his own coaching program, UVU Soccer Training, and now through KickDeck (by providing solutions to fundamental problems like the lack of direction when training alone that plague young athletes) it's inspiring.
So go ahead and watch the interview below. Please note that though the timestamp is not clickable here, it is on YouTube. The interview is also available via podcast.
This is an inspiring and fascinating interview, be sure to listen!
0:01:05 How did you fall in love with soccer?
0:02:00 Were there a lot of people playing soccer?
0:02:27 Growing did you support a soccer team or have a favourite player?
0:03:36 What was the age you started watching soccer?
0:04:41 What is a day in the life of a professional soccer player?
0:05:41 Kick Deck discussion
0:06:37 Did you always play centerback?
0:07:00 when did you start playing centerback?
0:07:24 Who did you model your play after?
0:08:22 What is one thing that a coach said to you that helped you get your game to another level?
0:09:07 Most challenging thing about being a centerback?
0:10:44 Could you expand on your experience in Syracuse?
0:11:44 As a centerback what is your favourite goal?
0:13:12 What was that like to represent Canada?
0:14:20 How did you get on the National team radar?
0:15:10 What was that like playing against Guyana/Granada?
0:15:47 Favourite food when you were out there?
0:16:21 What can Canada do collectively to develop young soccer players?
0:18:18 When did you first hear about the CPL?
0:19:08 How did you get on the radar of Rob Gale?
0:20:04 What has it like to be Valour first ever signing?
0:21:22 What was one thing you learned from Rob Gale?
0:22:25 How did you like playing in the CPL – lots of travel?
0:23:26 Did you watch the Island Games?
0:23:47 What is the experience like with the Pittsburgh Riverhouds?
0:24:55 How do you like playing in the USL? How is that different from the CPL?
0:26:03 What is your favourite team to play against in the USL?
0:26:23 Favourite thing about your coach with the Riverhounds?
0:27:29 How does mindset help you in everyday life?
0:28:14 What age did you realize mindset is very important?
0:29:22 Is there a quote that you live your life by? Discussion.
0:30:54 Do you read personal development books?
0:31:16 Favourite personal development books?
0:32:57 When did you develop that entrepreneurial experience?
0:36:20 Balancing being a professional soccer player and running KickDeck?
0:37:55 How did you come up with KickDeck?
0:39:55 Tell us about your new deck? Fundamental skills – lack of direction
0:44:34 How can people find out more about KickDeck?
0:45:25 What was it like playing for Charleston?
0:46:35 What advice would you give young players trying to go pro?
0:47:36 Would you go into coaching after your playing career?
RAPID FIRE QUESTIONS
0:48:47 What is your favourite drill?
0:49:09 Do you play FIFA?
0:49:10 What is your 5 a side dream team?
0:50:55 If you could have lunch with anyone in the world?
0:51:00 Skylar asks Jack about his goals.
0:54:50 Do you have a pet?
0:55:00 What’s your favourite fruit?
0:55:25 Do you have a nickname?
0:55:49 What is one superpower you’d like to have?
0:57:17 Do you cook?
0:57:32 One place in the world you’d like to visit?
0:57:47 What is your favourite movie documentary
0:58:02 Are you a good dancer?
0:58:10 What are 3 words to define you?
0:58:24 What are your goals for the future?