Sports and Psychology

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Most of the times we see that the most active staff in a game are the team doctor and first aiders but rarely do we note that as much as a player needs physical help they also need mental help. This is where sports psychology comes in.

Sport psychology is a multidisciplinary field spanning psychology, sport science and medicine. The APA proficiency recognizes sport psychology as a postgraduate focus after a doctoral degree in one of the primary areas of psychology and licensure as a psychologist. The proficiency encompasses training in the development and use of psychological skills for optimal performance of athletes, in the well-being of athletes, in the systemic issues associated with sports settings and organizations and in developmental and social aspects of sports participation.

Sourced from:http://www.apadivisions.org/division-47/

So what do sports psychologist do. These experts help the athlete with issues to do with focus when facing a game, temperament issues and even how to get along with other team mates some players may not know the best way to relax or they might be afraid of losing a game. The psychologist will teach on how to relax and even give themselves positive self-talk among other things.

Some athletes seek help from a sport psychologist or other exercise and sport psychology professional when they have a problem.

They might become anxious or lose focus during competition, for example. They might have trouble communicating with teammates, controlling their temper or even just motivating themselves to exercise. Or they might choke at key moments during a game.

Enhance performance. Various mental strategies, such as visualization, self-talk and relaxation techniques, can help athletes overcome obstacles and achieve their full potential. Cope with the pressures of competition. Sport psychologists can help athletes at all levels deal with pressure from parents, coaches or even their own expectations. Recover from injuries. After an injury, athletes may need help tolerating pain, adhering to their physical therapy regimens or adjusting to being sidelined. Keep up an exercise program. Even those who want to exercise regularly may find themselves unable to fulfill their goal. Sport psychologists can help these individuals increase their motivation and tackle any related concerns. Enjoy sports. Sports organizations for young people may hire a sport psychologist to educate coaches about how to help kids enjoy sports and how to promote healthy self-esteem in participants.

Sports psychology can even help people off the playing field. The same strategies that sport psychologists teach athletes — relaxation techniques, mental rehearsals and cognitive restructuring, for example — are also useful in the workplace and other settings.

Sourced from:http://www.apa.org/helpcenter/sport-psychologists.aspx

A successful athlete is one who has the right attitude, deals well with people, has goals that are realistic, can manage anxiety among other things. Your attitude is a matter of choice. It determines how you view everything else and you handle yourself and others.


Successful Athletes:

  • Choose and maintain a positive attitude.
  • Maintain a high level of self-motivation.
  • Set high, realistic goals.
  • Deal effectively with people.
  • Use positive self-talk.
  • Use positive mental imagery.
  • Manage anxiety effectively.
  • Manage their emotions effectively.
  • Maintain concentration.

Sourced from:https://www.sportpsych.org/nine-mental-skills-overview

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