Being cut from a team is one of the most difficult situations for athletes to handle. It's also one of the most difficult situations for parents to deal with because our natural instincts are to want to step in and rescue them and take away the pain that they are feeling. Believe me, I understand! I am a parent!
Our kids are meant to learn this lesson to see how they are going to respond to challenges like this in the future. However, your role is crucial at this point. If you make excuses for them, or blame the coaches, or even belittle them for not being good enough, it can have a lasting effect on how they handle these types of challenges in the future.
Your role is not to try to fix it. Instead, it is to help guide them through the pain, embarrassment, doubt, and fears they have just experienced as a result of not making the team.
So, how do...
The new year is upon us and millions of people from around the world are hoping this coming year will be better than the last by making a New Year's Resolution.
A recent Finder survey reveals that 141.1 million adult Americans — or 55.31% of all American adults — think that following through on their New Year’s resolutions is well within the cards. But according to a study conducted by the University of Scranton, just 8 percent of people actually achieve their New Year’s goals, while around 80 percent fail to keep their New Year’s resolutions. (Even though we don't believe in "failing", only learning opportunities)
Making a change and getting what you want in life comes down to getting yourself to do what needs to be done when it needs to be done. The two biggest reasons for not following through is lack...
It’s been a crazy year full of lots of challenges! But even in the midst of the craziness and all the challenges presented, I still feel as though it was a productive year because of the things I’ve learned along the way. These lessons help me to grow as a person and as a coach. I would like to share these lessons and insights to end this year and start the new year with a clean slate.
Before I share these lessons, I need to preface it by explaining a technique I use with the athletes I work with on how to turn any loss into a victory, or how to turn a challenging situation into one where they can learn and grow from it.
At the end of every game, at the end of every season, and/or after a setback or challenge, I have them ask themselves these three magic questions:
This year has been one for the history books, for sure. All of this quarantining has been a foreign territory for most of us and especially for our kids. Most of the parents I talk to have voiced their concern for their child and how their children are struggling with the emotional challenges that have been caused by the pandemic. The isolation, fears, and doubts are accompanied by irritable outbursts, not to mention the video game addiction that seems to be taking over our children!
It's normal for most parents to become concerned for their child's mental health, although the pandemic has taken it to a whole new level.
However, the oxygen mask analogy comes into play here. As parents, it is natural to try to take care of our children, often putting our own needs in the background. By doing that, we end up not taking care of ourselves or them. You need to put your own mask on first or you will be no good for your kids. We...
Wouldn’t it be great to never lose again? Or to allow disappointment to get you down? What if I told you that I have developed the secret that will allow you to never lose again and to turn disappointment into achievement? Would you be interested?
Actually, I can make that claim if you are willing to examine how you have viewed “winning and losing” and disappointment in the past. You see, life is a very funny teacher.
You typically don’t start off being able to accomplish great things. You have to lose before you can win. Example: you had to crawl before you walked. You didn’t just take off walking one day.
Can you remember anything you have ever done where you just did it and (POOF) you were the best? Probably not. We all have to lose before we can win. To have disappointment to appreciate achievement.
With that said, most of us tend to get sad, frustrated, and angry when...
Hey Parents! I know it's often difficult to know when to step in and when to butt out when your child is an athlete. It’s hard to know how hard you should push them, should you help them with skill development, how best to support them, what hidden messages you are sending and what you should and should and shouldn’t say after they lose.
We have found that parents' behaviors and attitudes are almost always the key difference between successful and unsuccessful athletic experiences. Parents should focus their energy on areas where they can support their athlete.
One of those areas is helping your child develop and implement their PreCompetition Routine to achieve THEIR Peak Performance.
Consistent preparation leading up to a competition is a major contributor to your student-athlete getting consistent results. This consistent preparation...
I remember as a kid grabbing my buddies, each of us jumping on our bikes, and heading out on an adventure. First it was just around the neighborhood but as we got older our sense of discovery grew and we moved up to riding to the lake. Now, at the time, Folsom Lake seemed like it was quite a long way from our homes. Thanks to the magic of Google maps, I now know that it’s a 5 mile ride. The kind of ride that today, because I’m a “serious cyclist”, I likely would not even get out of bed for.
But man, those rides were fun. Back in the day of no helmets…I wouldn’t consider getting on a bike today without putting one on…weaving through the streets, just taking it all in. We took our time and goofed around. No big hurry and no agenda. Just get to the lake.
I compare that to how I ride today and it’s like a different world. More than likely now, I don’t just go for a ride, I’m “training”. It has become serious...
“Shut up legs!” is a mantra made famous by cycling great Jens Voight. It seems to be the quintessential statement of mental toughness. If I say it and believe it, it shall be true. A finely tuned professional athlete might be able to will his way to tap into that last 5 or 10 percent of effort that makes the difference between victory or failure, but what about the rest of us?
I would argue that mental toughness is more complicated than it sounds. The easy definition, it seems, is when things get tough, buckle down and force your will. After two completed full Ironman triathlons in 2012 and 2014 and my first ever Did Not Finish (DNF) in 2016 at Ironman Cozumel, my understanding of toughness has shifted a bit.
For those of you who may not know, an Ironman is a triathlon made up of a 2.4 mile swim followed by 112 miles cycling and then a full marathon (26.2 miles). In my first two races, I faced some really dark times and wanted to quit at multiple stages of the race....
We could all use a little Zen in our life. I recently read The Champion's Mind: How Great Athletes Think, Train, and Thrive. The author dedicated a whole chapter to 22 Zen stories and how they can relate to sports and life in general. I thought they were great stories and would like to share them with you. The following is an excerpt.
Zen is being fully awake without illusion in the present moment. The term Zen derives from the Sanskrit word dhyana, which means meditation or contemplation. Zen approaches to gaining wisdom can be quite effective because they are stimulating to the imagination. Zen stories provide a powerful way to bypass an overly analytical mind and instead move important information straight to the subconscious. These stories can help mobilize one’s internal resources and bring them to bear on solving problems and making positive changes. In this chapter, 22 classic Zen teaching stories and Taoist tales are presented to further deepen...
In the last blog post I discussed the importance of consistency and how it is the one thing that separates the very best in every sport from the rest. The best athletes in the world are able to perform at a consistently high level day in and day out, week in and week out for months and even years. How can you learn to be consistent like the Pro's?
The Inverted U Theory is based on the premise that athletes can attain a state of mental readiness that will allow them to perform at their peak on a consistent basis. The inverted U explains how some people need “bang on your chest" (often football or rugby) type preparation while others need a “quiet isolation and or meditation" (Chess). Most athletes fall somewhere in the middle. The key is to find your individual “FLOW” zone.
The graphic above depicts the "sweet spot" for optimal performance. The purpose of a pre-competition routine is...