Changing the Face of Sport - Sports Psychology - Sports

Changing the Face of Sport - Sports Psychology   by Ray Hanks

in Sports    (submitted 2012-12-29)

Using your mind in sport is an intrinsic part of performance. And the reality is that serious athletes need to learn to win the mental game if they wish to succeed. In modern times, competition has become tougher and the margin for error much less. The commercial reality of sport means that athletes need to seriously consider mental skill training if they hope to step up the consistency of their winning performances.

Sports psychologycertainly has a role to play in the modern sporting era.

Serious athletes are under pressure right from the day one of joining a team. They can feel stressedat training and competition and can become frustrated when they canâEUR(TM)t utilize their skills during competition.

So why cant athletes consistently perform to the best of their ability? Is it due to lack of physical training? Certainly not! Most serious athletes get training at the hands of seasoned coaches. The problem is their poor mental skills training.

Serious mental skills training was undertaken in 1920 by German football teams. The Germans recognised the need for every team and every player to get training to overcomethe pressure and fear of losing game. They also saw a need to help the athletes ignore the comments and criticisms from opponents and fans. After all, anathlete is first a human being and like other people he has some strengths and weaknesses.

Mental skills training helps players control their emotions and focus on their game. Each athletecan receive individual skills training working with the psychologist and learning tostay focused even in adverse circumstances.

There is a need to change the present training structures in many sporting organisations to includesports psychology so that athletes canconsistently give their best performances.Sports psychologists are at work and are looking for ways to work with coaches and athletes to improve the consistency with which athletes achieve personal best performances.

Much has been written on sports psychology. There are Internet articles, blogs and journals published by eminent sport psychologists. Today there are many elite athletes who have benefitted from an experienced sports psychologist. And if an athlete refuse to consider mental skills then it is highly likely that they will struggle to deliver a personal best performance on a regular basis.

Sports psychology is a practical discipline. ActionâEUR"oriented research is going on across the globe. Athletes feel immense pressure to perform,but with the right mental skills training athletes can deliver on their physical skills and see the fruits of their hard work come to light during the competition.