Category: Imagery

Just Imagine: You Can Improve Your Mental Toughness

By: Premier Sport Psychology

You’re in the lead, heart pounding, racing forward through the pain toward the finish. In the last moments, you see your competition come up next to you. Do you have what it takes to win? More often than we might think, the difference between first and second, between winning and losing, between making the cutoff time or just barely missing it, is in our minds. In those last few seconds, did you truly give all that you had? Did you use every single ounce of energy that your body could produce, or were you unable to tap into that last tiny bit? Could you have pushed just the slightest bit harder to edge out your opponent? My guess is that physically, you were capable of more…but mentally, you were not. And if you did not win, this is likely the reason why. The ability to persevere in the face of pressures, challenges, and adversities is a highly sought-after trait in athletes and coaches alike (Mattie & Munroe-Chandler, 2011). Mental toughness is the key ...

Preparing for Playoffs

By: Premier Sport Psychology

With high school fall seasons coming to an end in Minnesota, and across the country, playoff season has just begun. As a high school athlete, you may be prepared physically because you have been training all season, but how much have you prepared mentally? Playoff games can feel much different than regular season games because they have more riding on them; for example, the chance to go to the state tournament. They are typically more intense and require everyone to be on top of their game. In a study done by the University of Montreal, sport psychologists worked with a professional hockey team to help them prepare for the playoff season. What were their tips on how to prepare mentally for playoffs? Get focused and stay focused so it is easier to “stay in the moment”. Many playoff games go into overtime because ties are not an option. This extra time on the field or on the court may be a challenge for some athletes because they might be physically and emotionally drained. If you...

How Do You Prepare For Rio? Imagery!

By: Premier Sport Psychology

The Olympic games are a competition like no other--a stage that only a select few will ever get to compete on, but millions will watch from near and far. A level of honor, excitement, and pressure that is simply incomparable. Not only are you representing yourself, your family, and your team, but also your entire country. Sure these athletes have competed on plying fields at national or even world competitions, but the Olympic games are certainly unique in their own right. So how do you prepare for Rio? How do you prepare to compete your very best in the largest competition of your life? Train hard for countless hours. Eat, sleep and recover properly. Yes! But that is not good enough. That is not good enough to reach gold. The best of the best also work on their mental game, specifically using imagery. According to a survey by Jowdy and Durtschi, 90 percent of athletes and 94 percent of coaches at the Olympic Training Center in Colorado used imagery in their sport (Murphy, 2005). Al...