Coaching, jumps, sprints & more
Everything about jumping and sprinting and how to improve your performance
Coaching Athlete's Minds
We coaches will try to help athletes who don’t compete so well. We may suggest the learning of a script that they repeat over and over again in the months prior to competition. This script could focus on key technical requirements, such as positioning into the board in the long jump; front side mechanics and staying relaxed when at max velocity in the 100m and so forth. The aim being that the repeated practise of this “list” will embed it in the athlete’s mind so that in the heat of competition that voice says “stay relaxed”; “position onto the board” and so on. Then there’s a list that could be created to create greater confidence and reduce competition anxiety. Simply repeating “I am calm, confident and well-prepared” can trigger off those emotions that are being described by the words. Smiling (or trying to) can help change mood state. However, as with physical training, these technical and competition preparation readiness lists/words/gestures, need constant practise. The unconscious mind is apparently more of a nagging negative rather than a happy, uplifting positive one.
This is a paragraph from an article I'm writing for Athletics Weekly, I'll share more in time, but it's - in this stand alone format here - to act as a stimulation - a probe to make coaches think about their role in how their athletes perform. In writing the article I began to realise how crucial our leadership/personality and communicative ability is. Scary! Rather like an athlete who fails to address "how to compete" because they are fearful of addressing potentially personal issues - the same can apply to us stopwatch and tape measure holders...
Our focus needs it seems to be turned inwards as much as outwards... more to come.
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