Consider this….you are standing by the boards, waiting for your name to be called, at which point you will skate to your starting position and perform your program. How does your body feel in this moment?
- Your legs feel stiff?
- Your heart is beating fast?
How would you rate your stress level?
- An 8 or 9 out of 10?
At the point where your stress level is a 8 or 9 out of 10 you have lost control of your performance and are probably feeling disempowered.
Learn how to take back that POWER and CONTROL YOUR NERVES during your performance!
The 3 step process
Step 1: Bring awareness to how your body expresses stress? Identify the physiological reactions you have to stress and write them down. Example: exaggerated heart beat, uneasy stomach, stiff knees.
Step 2: Practice and perfect deep breathing. Deep breathing refers to strong inhalation in the nose and exhalation out the mouth. This is a simple technique that has powerful, positive effects on the body.
Step 3: Combine Step 1 and Step 2. Find a place where you can relax and close your eyes. Engage in your deep breathing exercise while focusing on the body part that you are experiencing the stress reaction in. Breathe into the body part, taking your stress down from an out of control 8 or 9 to a powerful 5 or 6 out of 10.
When I work one-on-one with a skater I engage him/her in this process and take it one step further by creating a relaxation script that he/she reads, records and listens to daily. The exercise gets committed to memory and can then be used anywhere at anytime the skater feels stress. This becomes an essential tool for the athlete.
If you would like to learn more about using relaxation scripts and other tools to improve your mental game check out my Mind-Body Performance Coaching Program