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Psychological Skills Training Program

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Psychological Skills Training Program

Athletes have the physical ability to get through most of the toughest times that they face. But the most successful athlete is aware that their mental ability is just as important as their physical ability. In this case, an elite athlete who is a pitcher for a softball team has begun to throw her pitches erratically during the time when it matters the most. Game time decisions where the score is on the line and she must throw the ball into the strike zone. However, she seems to not be able to handle the pressure of having the game on her shoulders and continues to become frustrated and is ultimately losing her motivation and love for the game.

The rebuilding process of this young and talented athlete is going to begin with a strong psychological skills training program. In this program we will focus on her foundation skills and her performance skills. When focusing on her foundations skills this will include, motivation, self-esteem, self-confidence, and commitment. As we address her performance skills we will focus on re-charging her concentration, her ability to cope with pressure, and her control activation.

To begin we will tackle these issues by helping the athlete build or re-focus on what their short and or long term goals are in regards to how they want to perform during their playing time and when they are placed in a situation when the game is on the line and they have an opportunity to win it all. As we continue our two way conversation, the athlete will have the opportunity to build a consistent self-confidence.

Once the realization and fire is back towards the athletes goals on performance I would like to introduce a small feature of self-talk. I would stress the importance of positive self-talk because this athlete is already in a negative state and I believe that the self-talk that they currently have is nothing but negative. Which is a reason as to why they are continuing to perform in a negative way. I think that briefly informing the athlete what the goal is to positive self-talk will remind them of the importance and once they are ready to use it, they will.

Mental imagery is a strong visual reminder of overcoming adversity and if utilized can help an athlete drastically. The focus for this athlete will be on this task. Because the athlete has refocused on her goals mental imagery is a great way to realizes that the athlete can achieve those goals. As the athlete remembers a negative situation that occurred in the past, if she can form that same occurrence and remember her goals and focus and relive the same situation and place it in her mind as a winning situation, her confidence and performance will improve. She will be ready for the next tough competition that she faces.

To accomplish this process we must initiate three



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