At a recent TED Talk in Columbia, South Carolina, professional whitewater kayaker and Blue Ridge Outdoors contributor Chris Gragtmans laid out the secrets to overcoming everyday failures and adversity on the way to achieving great things.

“Nobody gets good at anything without failing,” Gragtmans said. “And success lies in seeing failure as a tool for growth.”

One of Western North Carolina’s most prominent whitewater professionals, Gragtmans knows a thing or two about overcoming failure and adversity on the long road to success.

He recently overcame what could have been a career-ending shoulder injury sustained during the GoPro Mountain Games Steep Creek Race in Vail, Colorado. Read more about that here and watch the full video of Gragtman’s TED talk below.