Mental Training Skills for Youth Athletes

By RonUsher | Uncategorized

Nov 28
image of brain and neurons working

Help your athletes get their toughness neurons firing

When I’ve done a great job of coaching, I’ve emphasized mental toughness training and the psychology of sport.

After being out of youth coaching for a while and now getting back into it, I thought I had done enough.

Not even close.

The high school athletes I’m working with a way behind the curve when it comes to having a competitive attitude and being successful. I thought I did enough for them, but after the results we had realize we didn’t go near far enough.

And so I’ve been researching new techniques and approaches. I found one I like from a book by Jason Selk, 10-Minute Toughness. I really like the book and the approach.

It is simple, quick and easy to implement. It would work with a wide range of athletes from about 9 to adult. Some of it could be used for younger kids, but it would have to be dummied down a lot.

Selk recommends a five step program for developing mental toughness. The steps are:

  • Taking a centering breath
  • Using a performance statement
  • Visualizing a highlight movie
  • Using an identity statement
  • Repeating the centering breath.

He goes into some detail about each step and how to develop it.

I like the he recommends it take about 3 to 4 minutes and to only do it once or twice a day. And that you can get burnt out if you do it too much.

I’m going to incorporate his techniques for some of my playing and business life as well.

I will let you know how it goes.

Again, if your team needs some mental toughness drills this is an excellent resource.

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