Psychological strategies to enhance motivation and manage anxiety (Goal…
Psychological strategies to enhance motivation and manage anxiety
Concentration / Attention skills (focusing)
Things that interfere with concentration include:
Noise from crowds
Refers to an athlete's focusing on a task rather than how they do.
Sports that are high in skill level require intense focusing in order to complete the skill more effectively
Longer duration sports require sustained focus, where as short duration do not require attention or focus for long periods.
To help improve focus athletes may:
replicate a distracting environment to ensure they are able to focus
May set rituals or routines to help trigger improved focus
E.g. Diving and golf requires intense focus to execute the skill.
E.g. Marathon runners require sustained energy
E.g. Rugby and soccer have a combination of extended concentration, but also have shorter periods when completing complex skills, e.g. Free kick
Mental rehearsal / visualisation / imagery
Mental rehearsal can improve performance by:
elevating the body to optimum arousal levels
providing a clear idea of what has to be done
Narrowing thoughts to a single task
Visualisation can give people the skills necessary to imagine their success, before it happens and therefore help to improve their confidence.
To be completely effective, mental rehearsal must consist of clear, realistic pictures of the performance, and ideally multiple rehearsals. In order for the visualisation to be replicated the setting, timing and speed must be accurate.
Can be used to visualise techniques, actions and movements and be able to assess negative situations and envision solutions
Anxious or over-aroused people can use relaxation techniques to calm themselves down.
When a person is relaxed their blood pressure lowers, heart rate slows down and the tension in their muscles relaxes.
Relaxation helps an individual focus on the task and control their own movements
Relaxation techniques include:
Listening to Music
Watching TV or a movie
Controlled breathing exercises
Pilates, yoga, hypnosis and meditation
May also use:
Progressive muscular relaxation: relaxing specific muscle groups
Mental relaxation: relax mind and body through controlled breathing
Mental rehearsal: visualising performance of a task
Meditation: focusing on thoughts using repetitive sounds and images
Centred Breathing: release tension before performance through controlled breathing
Short term and long term goals can benefit an athlete, providing them with objectives to focus on.
Goals are achievement based targets used to direct drive and focus
The SMART method is an effective tool for setting goals:
Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Time specific
Short-term goals : Achieved in a limited amount of time and are the stepping stones to achieving long-term goal (e.g. gain a personal best in discus)
Long-term goals: are larger objectives, greater investment of time and energy (e.g. complete City to surf run)
Behavioural goals: improving behaviours when in training or competition (controlling of temper )
Performance Goals: Athlete's desired level of success in sport (Winning a medal)