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Imagery Training 101: Introducing Imagery to Young Athletes

coaching imagery youth Feb 12, 2018

Creating visual imagery is a state of mind. It involves the reproduction of what we see. But much more that that… it becomes an outlet to express feelings about what we experience – Tracy Sabin

Early research on imagery in sport by Mumford and Hall (1985) pointed out that effective imagery must include realistic elements of an athletic performance.  This means that all aspects of both training and competition should be included when practicing and utilizing imagery.

When presenting your imagery program, take time to explain the purpose of imagery to your athletes. Engage them in dialogue as to its significance, how it works (as a blueprint) and its specific uses. Each athlete should be encouraged to brainstorm individually where imagery might be useful for their particular sport, specific set of skills and elements of training. Depending on sport specific requirements, imagery can be used for technical training, rehearsal, relaxation scripts and preparation for...

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3 Ways to Encourage Purposeful Practice With Your Youth Athletes

goalsetting practice youth Jan 30, 2018

Recently, a 13 year-old athlete came to our meeting in the shirt below. Sam received this gift and was waiting to share it with me. We’ve been working together for 3 months and introduction of mental skills training to his sport development has been instrumental in his injury rehabilitation and confidence. He showed up ready to train, journal in hand. The part that struck me was the level of maturity, preparation and passion for his sport that he chose to share and therefore, this simple t-shirt and conversation starter became the focus of our session. “No Apollogies”, a play on words and the brand of shirt, but at a thematic foundational level, commitment and motivation.

 Lately, I have been challenging athletes to incorporate individualized planning and use performance profiling, specifically in relation to their training, competition, and development. Simple to some however, I have discovered the significance of motivation as the catalyst that puts things...

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