Before The Event

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    Joe Spano on #15501

    In my last post I wrote about the importance of stress reduction. One area of importance I mentioned was how you prepare for your competition. The time leading up to an event is arguably the most important part of the act of competing. This time can be stressful and potentially problematic. Athletes who experience anxiety may exacerbate the situation through:Remembering poor performancesDoubti

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    Mike Young
    Keymaster
    Mike Young on #79913

    Any suggestions on how to combat or address the first point (remembering bad past experiences / performances) when it does sneak in to the thought stream?

    ELITETRACK Founder

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    mferrari3 on #79918

    “go through focus exercises”
    any examples of these excercises?

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    Joe Spano on #79920

    Any suggestions on how to combat or address the first point (remembering bad past experiences / performances) when it does sneak in to the thought stream?

    To combat this thinking you can use the “S.R.C.” method. First, “stop” yourself, both physically and mentally. Then pick a cue word (can be things like “stop”, “positive”, “focus”, etc.) to help “recognize” this negative thinking. Then “change” the negative thinking to positive statements in this situation. Using positive statements such as, “I’m ready”, “I can win”, etc or thinking back to positive events. This method will take practice and you may have to stop yourself numerous times before the negative thinking goes away. As you do this more regularly the process becomes much quicker.

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    Joe Spano on #79921

    “go through focus exercises”
    any examples of these excercises?

    Focus exercises will help you relax and focus. Some quick focus exercises (some you may have to do before you’re on the track):
    1. Imagery – visualize yourself competing or relaxing
    2.Select an object and try to relax and concentrate on the object. Start thinking about every part of it and try to memorize its form. Then close your eyes and try to visualize it in front of you. If you can’t, open your eyes again and start over.
    3. Close your eyes and start to visualize the number “1” in front of you and say “one” in your head when you see it clearly. Allow the one to disappear and start to visualize the number two and say “two” loud in your head when you see it. Repeat this procedure until you feel focused and in control.
    4. Review your goals for the day. Think about why you chose them and what it will take to achieve them. Stay positive and only on yourself.

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    johnstrang on #79927

    [quote author="Mike Young" date="1238031504"]Any suggestions on how to combat or address the first point (remembering bad past experiences / performances) when it does sneak in to the thought stream?

    To combat this thinking you can use the “S.R.C.” method. First, “stop” yourself, both physically and mentally. Then pick a cue word (can be things like “stop”, “positive”, “focus”, etc.) to help “recognize” this negative thinking. Then “change” the negative thinking to positive statements in this situation. Using positive statements such as, “I’m ready”, “I can win”, etc or thinking back to positive events. This method will take practice and you may have to stop yourself numerous times before the negative thinking goes away. As you do this more regularly the process becomes much quicker.[/quote]

    A lot of people might think this is simple or corny but it really does work. I have to go through this process a lot of times, especially in the pole vault where I am terrified. Don’t underestimate the power of your brain.

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    BaboT&F on #79930

    something that i learned from a friend in high school was before each meet, a index card with an inspirational quote was given out to certain persons, ie people on a relay team or at the championship meets with fewer people all of the participants… i feel that focusing on that quote usually helps, it is something that i have brought to my school, prior to each meet a quote gets passed around my entire mens and womens team (we have a very small team). I chose to focus on that quote, i find it calms me down and creates a passion in me. This past week, the quote was:

    “Champions aren’t made in gyms. Champions are made from something they have deep inside them a desire, a dream, a vision. They have to have the skill and the will. But the will must be stronger than the skill.”
    – Muhammad Ali

    For me i looked to the quote to keep my mind clear before i ran my race which i was very nervous for. It was my own visualization and concentration technique.

    Just something i thought i would share

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