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Posts by John Gassaway

Facing Fear (part 3)

Facing your fears can be very difficult, but not doing so may result in many missed opportunities, self-doubt, avoidance, and low self-esteem. Fear produces hot sweats, clammy hands, muscle tension, tightness in the throat/chest, difficulty breathing or increased respiration, fidgetiness, and shakiness. With these symptoms it can be very difficult to concentrate and focus on…

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Facing Fear (part 2)

When facing fear and developing a plan to overcome some difficulty, it is important to use progressions. Setting a plan in motion that allows you to gradually increase the exposure to the fear will ultimately result in greater tolerance of fear, mastery of emotional control, and working through challenges. Though this process can be modified…

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Performance Demands

Athletes face performance demands in many contexts; regardless of emotional state, feeling ill, or daily stressors, an athlete’s performance is supposed to remain unaffected. However, some performance demands can be unreasonable. Athletes are asked to place their performance above all else and, depending on their league, team, coach, teammates, etc., the commitment can be well…

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Overcoming Fear (part 1)

Many athletes will have to face fear as a result of increasing levels of competition, returning to sport after injury, personal challenges, disagreements with coaches, and not living up to their own expectations. Depending on the sport, these fears can relate to actual fighting (full contact sports), injury risk skills (gymnastics), or even defying death…

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Communication with Coaches

Communication is one of the most important aspects of learning and coaching, and therefore communicating with your coach is an essential part of enhancing your performance. Coaches should be respected, trusted, and deferred to for your training. If you don’t feel that you can respect your coach, if you question their suggestions or motives, or…

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Living with Gratitude

Living with gratitude Having gratitude and then living with gratitude can enrich your life in numerous ways. When we appreciate what we have or what we have experienced we are much more likely to enjoy ourselves and our environments. Instead of looking for what we want or regretting what we missed, we become more engaged…

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Building Confidence

Building confidence starts with understanding what confidence is.   Confidence is our beliefs in ourselves and in our ability to successfully perform in our sport through challenges, obstacles, growth, advancement in competition, and virtually every part of our participation. By using empowering, reassuring, and confident self-talk we enhance our confidence and become much more likely…

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Focus

  Focus is versatile and can be advantageous not only in all aspects of sports, but in almost all aspects of life as well. Focus enhances your ability to learn new skills and perform these skills without distractions. Focus is important during the learning process as it allows athletes to sustain attention on the most…

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Goal Setting for Athletes

Goal setting is a process that helps you chose WHERE you want to go in life and HOW you are going to get there. By setting goals and measuring their achievement, you are able to improve awareness of what you have done and what you are capable of doing. Moreover, properly set goals are motivating and…

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Veteran Olympian Advantage

Why do Michael Phelps, Gabby Douglas, Aly Raisman, and other returning Olympians have an edge on competition? After you have experienced something for the first time – especially something unique, stressful, exciting, emotional, etc. – it creates a familiarity in your senses and expectations that can significantly enhance your ability to thrive and overcome challenges…

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