Mind Games: Sports Psychology for Every Player
by Dr. Gary Beale Vist his website www.drrelax.com
A Review Re-Visited
Every player has mental and physical deficiencies in their game. A coach's job normally revolves around the fundamentals
of any given sport. We, as coaches, constantly are looking for ways to improve our athletes abilities. Most coaches are constantly
attending coaching clinics, reading the latest books, watching videos, etc. to help improve their athletes. Drills, individual, and team
play are used during practice to "fix" these inadequacies.
I have had many occasions to get upset at my players' choice of game time decisions. Why did they do what they did? Was it because of
poor skills? Sometimes. However, I have always believed that the mental part of the game to be as important, if not more, as the physical. I have always
strived to offer my athletes some personal coaching to get past their mental lapses.
This past season, I was running up against a brick wall with my oldest (13 year old) son. His attitude and confidence
level were down. Practices were fine. He would be involved in everything. The situations would unfold and his decisions were good. A
defender would not allow him to dribble penetrate, so he would look to the wing or post to make a pass. A half court trap would come along and again
he would make the correct choice, by passing out of the double team. His defensive pressure was adequate, but was lacking some aggressiveness.
I could really see the difference during games. Our "diamond" press would frustrate opponents but somehow he would always be a step out
of sync. I felt that I come to the point that I expected too much of him. But he came to me and said, "I am just not playing like I
want to." We sat down on several occasions to render a solution to his problem. We tried several different approachs, nothing seemed to
"fix" his mental breakdowns in the games.
I don't want to call this a last resource. However, I needed some help. I took my own advice and contacted Dr. Gary Beale. I made him aware
of my son's situation. Derek responded to the affirmation form found at
http://drrelax.com/affform.htm and Dr. Beale produced the affirmations sheet. Derek (rather sheepishly) would say his affirmations out loud in his bedroom every night. As
he put it, when do the CD's get here?
Dr. Beale and I had discussed producing the CD set for Derek. It was a quick process to send a CD of Derek's choice and receive the two CD set. Derek popped
the CD into his personal CD player the afternoon the package arrived. Ten minutes later he walked out of his room and confronted me. I thought that he (Dr. Beale) was going to
talk to me or something. I reminded Derek of what "subliminal" messaging is all about. He returned to his room feeling a bit better.
The fun part was going to be to get Derek to listen to CD One, the Relaxation and Imagery CD. I was wrong and he was right.
He had no problem at all listening to it. I think he actually enjoyed listening. He listened to this CD every night. As he put it,
"It relaxes me and knocks me right out." He was reffering to the methods of imagery used on the CD.
Well enough with the jibber-jabber, did all of this help? ABSOLUTELY!!! Derek began to notice the changes and would point them out to me.
"Dad, I don't know why but I didn't feel any pressure today." He said after scoring, scrapping, and fighting his team's way to a victory.
"I felt like I was six feet tall and nobody could stop me out there." (This was one of his affirmations.) His defensive mentality totally
changed, he was a different person. He went from never stealing the ball, to leading the team in steals at crunch time. If we were down,
somehow he would come up with the steal at the right time. Actually, in two identical situations down 6 points, he was able to steal the ball on two
consecutive defensive possessions and score 4 points in 8 seconds to get us within two points. We lost both games. However, give him another 4 seconds and he might have won us both games.
You just never know.
I do know one thing. Coaches, if you ever have athletes that need help with their mental game, this is definitely the answer. Dr. Beale's
methods work. I have yet to actually endorse any one product over the years on PowerBasketball. But, this time is the exception. This program
is without a doubt easy to use and will yield excellent results.
Read the original review.
Read Dr. Beale's article
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Excellent video with thoughts and drills on organizing your practices. Learn from one of the greatest coaches of the game, Coach "K".
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