“Coaching is not how much you KNOW. It is how much you can get players to DO.” – Bum Phillips
Does an athlete work with a sports psychologist if there are psychological problems they need to overcome? Or do they work with a sports psychologist to learn mental skills for optimal performance?
It is important to know the key concepts of sports and performance psychology.
Understanding the different between a clinical psychologists and sport psychologist is an importance aspect of to getting the best results in improving your mental game of football.
Sport psychology for football is the understanding of how the mind influences an athlete’s performance in a football game.
Within the principles of sport psychology, there are various concepts such as how do athletes prefer to learn, what is their personality, how can they attain states of relaxation and focus, how does an athlete learn to visualize a successful performance, do they understand and overcome their limiting beliefs and how does an athlete develop high levels of self-awareness.
One of the most fundamental aspects of sport psychology in football is to understand the athlete’s behavioral patterns and their individual personality. Coaches do this to some extent, but to get the best performance out of the players it needs to be done on a deeper level and that is where the sports psychologist comes in.
Understanding an athlete gives a window into how to communicate, build an effective plan for them and the team, assist them in building their football confidence, and overcome their weaknesses.
Mental visualization can help athletes develop their mental game. This entails specific training sessions to practice mental images.
This will allow the athlete to execution the perfect techniques and perfect performance in the game.
Visualization requires the athlete to relax, mentally focus on the present and then see the desired results in their mind and rehearse it over and over.
Another area in improving the mental game that sports psychologist can help you with is relatively simple but vitally important – goal setting.
Sports psychologists teach athletes how to set SMART goals. These goals are specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time framed.
Every athlete needs to set goals. First set the ultimate goal then break the goal down into smaller goals that will move you in the direction of obtaining the main goal. Having these smaller goals also teaches concentration skills and how to focus on the process rather than the outcome of a performance.
A sports psychologist can teach positive self-talk, which is an important key in the football mental game.
An athlete’s internal conversation is often a representation of their own self-beliefs. This helps boost the athlete’s self-belief in their ability to make changes and they begin to feel more comfortable while operating outside of their comfort zone.
Remember, the most critical contributor to athletic performance is your commitment.
Dedicate time to develop your mental skills in football and the overall results will be pleasing.
*Download the free mental game assessment and get started on Improving your Mental Game in Football.