“Winning is a habit. Unfortunately, so is losing.” Vince Lombardi
We can become what we do by making it a habit and therefore we can make excellence a habit through pre-game routines.
Before a competition, every athlete should take some time to groom their skills and warm up to help improve their performance on the field. In other words, a pre-game routine that is relevant to your position and tasks specific.
Football psychology explains that pre-game routines do in fact improve a player’s performance, especially when faced with unpredictable situations.
You might be wondering how a pre-game routine makes a difference. Well, you can achieve self-efficiency and boost your football confidence through certain repeated actions and thoughts.
A few examples might be, repeating positive thoughts to yourself, practicing your different moves or simply stretching to relax the muscles. You will notice a huge improvement in your mental toughness just from these easy methods if you continue them regularly.
For those who already have a pre-game routine, the most important thing to consider is whether or not your routine is working for you. You cannot expect magical results from a poorly built routine. Sometimes even if a player has a reliable sequence, it may stop making improvements eventually, and you will need to take it up a notch.
For example, elite football players may go for an early morning jog to warm up before the competition. Eventually, this may not be enough to warm them up, and they might need to do more than just jogging. Changing your pre-game routine is vital if it is not working.
Do’s and Don’ts
People may confuse a pre-game routine with superstition, and this is a huge mistake because a superstition does not affect your game because it is not relevant to it. Make sure your routine does not include things like lucky charms or fortune cookies.
Football psychologists state that many players have irrelevant habits because they believe it will bring them luck but almost every time it has proved to be of no use.
Depending on luck to make you win is a definite no. You need to incorporate mental preparation which you can do by visualization or going over strategies in your head.
If you visualize the possible situations on the field, you can beat adversity because your mind will be prepared for the best or the worst.
Your football mind plays a huge role in the way you perform so don’t disregard the mental factors when it comes to choosing a football pre-game routine.
Another way to improve your mental toughness is by positive thinking. It is very easy to let your fears come in the way of your game because of previous failures, but you must remember that changing your mindset can change your entire performance.
That is why it is suggested to always add positive thoughts into your pre-game routine like a mantra or even by listening to songs that ignite your self-confidence.
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