Psychological Skill Training

17 December 2013
Mental Edge
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Psychological Skill Training

Perhaps it’s happened to you. The result of a bad tackle. A leg giving out on a plant foot. A big injury and a long recovery. While you certainly have physical pain, the emotional distress from letting down teammates and needing to begin the long road back to full recovery might feel worse.

When dealing with rehab, we’ve begun to unpack the many facets behind quickly returning from injury. The first step often involves learning about the injury. What happened? How can I improve my movements to avoid another injury?

We then discussed the social component of injury rehabilitation. You should do everything in your power to remain involved in the day-to-day operations of the team. Stay up to date with the strategies and opponents. Become another coach and resource for your teammates.

Well, let’s add another arrow to the quiver — psychological skill training.

What is Psychological Skill Training?

It is a systematic training of mental skills to enhance sport performance. Psychological skills training positions athletes to develop better concentration, higher confidence, detail, less worry, positivity, and commitment. These items not only help on-field performance, they are critical to getting you back on the field quickly when you are injured.

How do you apply psychological skills training to your rehab?

For starters, it means using imagery. As we’ve mentioned before, visualization brings results. Studies also suggest imagery facilitates injury recovery rates. By imagining yourself mastering the techniques used in rehab, your body will better perform those techniques when you engage in those sessions. Imagery allows you to mentally rehearse your coping and emotional strategies you anticipate will arise during the rehabilitation process.

In addition to visualization, positive self-talk plays a vital role. Research concludes that self-talk is a key role in adhering to injury rehabilitation protocols. Self-talk changes pessimistic attitudes about your injury to more positive dialogues. It keeps you encouraged to continue the work and stay on track.

Finally, relaxation must go hand-in-hand with the rehab process. Inevitably, stress builds when you engage in a long rehab process. You see your team on the field and you want to play. You get antsy because it feels like you aren’t doing anything. It is important for an injured athlete to have a stress management program directed at reducing stressful and negative emotions. The ability to find that inner peace will get you back on the field quickly!

Working Your Way Back

Getting injured is awful, but there are methods that help you return more quickly to your optimal performance. Psychological skills training gives athletes the ability to visualize their recovery, positive self talk keeps you motivated, and implementing relaxation devices removes the stress inhibitors that keep you from the playing field.

Keep your chin up. Your injury won’t last forever. Keep at it and you’ll be back to topp online casinoer!