Improving Sporting Performance Easily With Effective Psychological Coaching


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Improving Sporting Performance Easily With Effective Psychological Coaching

  1. 1. ==== ====To truly achive ULTIMATE performance in ANY sport you desire, check this out... ====NLP achieving elite performanceEvery outstanding performer has a performance coach whether their sport is extremely physical,tactical, a team sport, or individual. No elite performer is successful in the current world withouttapping utilising the immense advantages that coaching techniques give. Psychological Coachingis the primary manner in which sports men and women achieve their successes.The concept of the inner game has grown in acceptance over the past few decades but is stillsomething which if frequently downplayed in many sporting arenas, and is certainly somethingskirted around by the media and specialist publications alike. Why this is a quandary. Specialistmagazines contain pages of advice on physical preparation, diet and nutrition, equipment,techniques, but there is a complete lack of any real understanding of the psychological aspects ofimproving performance.What is more of concern, perhaps is that the NLP and Coaching Community is so apologetic aboutwhat it can offer individuals wanting to improve their performance. NLP is based on the study ofexcellence in human performance and how to replicate this in others. IT was based on the study ofoutstanding therapists but rapidly went on to focus not on mending broken people but to look atexcellence in outstanding individuals. Martin Seligmann (Chair of the American PsychologicalAssociation no less!) has stated that we should be now move from focussing on broken peopleand how they are broken to focus on developing a psychology of excellence and learn how toapply what successful fully function individuals in the same circumstances to do achieve totallyopposite outcomes.It is true that many of the leading actors on the NLP stage have worked with elite performers in alltypes of sport and achieved outstanding results but the orthodoxy of limiting beliefs andcontrollability have undermined performance gains which have been found or modelled.Sporting performance the world over has improved in every respect in every sport. Even with thedrive against the use of performance enhancing drugs we have seen a year on year increase inhuman performance levels. Some of this is down to physiology and selection as more youngperformers are focussed into areas where they can naturally excel. More and more of performanceat an elite level is achieved through technical and psychological coaching approaches. With thedrive to lift national levels of performance, with immense amounts of money paying off withcountries such as the UK achieving unprecedented levels of success compared to its population.There are distinct advantages to psychological coaching which are paying off. However, thissuccess is only on the back of huge efforts with massive beurocracies. Where do individualswanting to improve their own performance as they approach elite level turn to to access this typeof support? Well the answer is a combination of physical coaching, technique coaching, but also in
  2. 2. accessing the benefits which a Psychological Performance coach can offer using coachingtechniques from the field of Neuro Linguistic Programming.Internal representations of performance and learningEach of us has a preferred manner of representing our experience to ourselves. Conventionalthinking categorises this as visual, auditory, Kinaesthetic, Olfactory and Gustatory representations.Add to this the vestibular system (Balance and three dimensional location and orientation) and youhave basis of an understanding of how an athlete represents their performance to themselves.Each performance will consist of a combination of these known as a strategy. Understanding thateach person has their own combination of representational systems and individual strategies forevery aspect of their performance gives the coach and athlete a constructive framework in whichto work. The Majority of performers will not have recognised their own processing andrepresentational systems until it is pointed out to them. It is important to test for theserepresentational systems as each person has their own way of representing their ownperformance. I worked wit an elite dancer, I assumed, wrongly, that she would represent herperformance would be kinaesthetic and possibly visual. When I modelled her I learned that thiswas not the case. She had no kinaesthetic, visual, or auditory dialogue representations of herperformance at all. Puzzled, I challenged this and she nervously confessed that each move had aninternal abstract noise which she could play back to reproduce movement. I would now suspectthat there was a vestibular representation as well although I was not able to elicit this at the time.Understand your own representational systems and you can take control of them and adjust themto suit your own performance.All representations are subject to variation I terms of sub-modalities:- colour to black and white forexample. Adjusting personal representations has a direct impact on performance, as well asbeliefs about performance.State managementState is crucial to learning and performance. State is the relationship between behaviour,performance, breathing, feelings, and thoughts. They are all linked, change one and the otherschange with them. Awareness of state gives you choice over your performance.New behaviour GeneratorThis is something which I would assume athletes do naturally but I have learned not to assume.Tapping into a persons representational systems, gives access to learning new performancesinternally. You might call this creative visualisation but NLP teaches us that visualisation alone willbe less effective tan utilising a persons own representational systems, association anddissociation in a variety of flexible patterns tailored to the athlete. In this way internal rehearsal canbe much, much more effective than visualisation alone. Once installed this pattern, enablesathletes to rehearse and create new performance in any context in preparation for competitiveperformance.Swish PatternMany athletes have patterns of problematic performance that are linked to internal representations
  3. 3. of performance. A golfer, for example may have a repeated experience of playing a particular shotbadly at a particular hole. What the Swish Pattern enables the golfer to do is to replace thenegative representation with a positive one. As they represent the poor performance tothemselves they use this as a trigger to elicit a representation of a positive performance instead.Once installed this pattern becomes automatic very quickly - with the original trigger for poorperformance now the trigger for a representation and now an expectation of excellentperformance. In the same way which specific aspects of performance can be switched frompositive to negative - other contexts locations or even competitors can be easily reprogrammed tobe triggers for excellence.Values elicitationEvery sports man or woman has a set of values and beliefs which operate at an unconscious leveldriving choices, actions and motivation. NLP Coaches are able to elicit a persons values hierarchyand enable them to reconsider both values and sporting performance in the light of sporting goalsand aspirations. One value that can be surprisingly absent is that of practice! Bring this to theattention of the client and the coach is able to lead them to a new understanding of theirrelationship with their sport.New Code Change PatternNew Code Change Pattern using New code games, high performance states are the ideal way ofworking directly with the unconscious of the athlete to access new resources, unconsciouslearning and state choice during performance. This can be utilised in preparation and training or,prior to performance. This is particularly useful and effective as the athlete can utilise aspect ofthis work individually to access high performance state at will.Circle of excellenceAnchoring positive resources, whether created or recalled into a spatial anchor can be immenselyuseful. Using the spaces or equipment used in the sport is a natural thing which all sports men andwomen do - teaching how to use this in a more structured and useful way has a direct positiveimpact on performance. Imagine using the golf grip as a powerful anchor or the doorway or smellof the squash court and the circle of excellence trigger. I use the brake lever hood of my cycle - italways has to be in just the right position on the bar but it always works.Timeline emotional releaseWe all carry programming through emotional triggers in our early development which continue toimpact on us throughout adulthood These are the underlying automatic reactions which we canassume are part of our personality. Things like not feeling good enough, being angry in certainsituations, anxiety under pressure are all link back to the imprint period in our early developmentor to specific points in our history. Timeline emotional release allows the athlete to let go ofunhelpful emotional issues which continue to impinge on their performance whether they areconscious of it or not. This is an interesting position for the coach to find themselves as they willcalibrate that the intervention would have a big impact on training and performance but the athletemay perceive this as a natural part of their make up. As such this pattern would usually be mosteffective once a coaching relationship is established and coach and athlete have good rapport.
  4. 4. Failure into Feedback (Reframing)Teaching this pattern may not be needed with some athletes who use negative feedback as a keymotivator but if failure is an issue during performance or training and preparation the skill ofreframing failure in to feedback or even feed-forward is extremely useful in giving the athletefreedom to learn quickly from their performance.Motivation strategies Meta ProgrammesEvery one f us has what are called meta-programmes operating at an unconscious level. One ofthe key ones for most people not just athletes is their motivation strategy. Motivation is eithertowards a goal, away from a negative or somewhere in between. If the strategy in a context isaway-from then as the athlete moves away from then the level of motivation decreases. This issomething which coaches and athletes alike need tobe aware of.Internal dialogueJohn Grinder, co-creator of NLP has called Internal Dialogue one of the biggest obstacles topersonal change and development. Using the Techniques of Frank Farrally is most useful in thisarea. If someone has a very supportive internal dialogue then the coach and athlete can utilise it tosupport performance further. If it is negative then it needs dealing with so that if not supportive it isat least quieter, less shrill - less demanding. Using sub-modalities one can change the direction ofID change its tone and volume, even change the persona of the ID. If it is particularly difficult thena re-negotiation of its role may be in order. Imagine in stead of having a nagging critic in you rightear you had a personal trainer and coach supporting you at all times? Sounds too good to be true?This is what a NLP trained coach can do for you.Sub-modality Belief ChangeEvery belief about sporting performance is represented internally. As such every negative beliefhas a particular way of being represented to the athlete. Using Sub-modality Map Across or Sub-modality belief Change pattern allows the athlete to have choice about their own beliefs of theirperformance. Taking a less then helpful belief which is in the way of personal success andreducing the impact it has on him or her or even better taking a weak belief about success andmaking it compelling to the point of being undeniable. This can be applied to equally topreparation, learning and specific and general performances.Unconscious taskingDeveloping a healthy relationship with ones unconscious is one of the most important aspects topersonal development and achieving success. This is something which some have a naturallygood relationship with their unconscious minds for others this is something which they have toestablish and develop. An NLP coach will do this with the client and work with them to develop abetter relationship with the unconscious mind. Once this is established then using the awarenessdeveloped in strategy elicitation the unconscious mind can be tasked with preparation, developingand producing desired states and performances over time. This process can be used to re-directautomatic responses for example from anger to energy - from vulnerability to curiosity. This
  5. 5. approach has huge potential to harness the potential of the unconscious mind in the service ofspecific tasks and objectives. For anyone doubting the role of the unconscious mind in sportingperformance should consider that tennis players start reacting to a bal before they are consciouslyaware of its trajectory, moving, assessing speed and direction and preparing a return in real timebefore the conscious mind can react.Peripheral VisionThe development of peripheral vision goes hand in hand with developing a better relationship withthe unconscious mind. Elite athletes have exceptional peripheral vision which allows them to takein huge amounts of information direct to the unconscious mind. This gives athletes a hugeadvantage in performance, taking in much more relevant information at any one time. This is easyto develop and becomes a natural state very quickly. It also has the benefit of immediatelychanging state to a calmer more resourceful one at any time one chooses. For anotherdemonstration of the importance and power of peripheral vision watch the video of MarkCavendish winning sprints - he is able to sense riders behind him reacting and respond to themand win races. He has not eyes in the back of his head - this is a demonstration of how importantperipheral vision is.Future pace & Compelling futureGoal setting is one thing but NLP teaches us that the mind is much more likely to achieve goals ifthey are created in a highly compelling way. The Compelling Future pattern is an excellent way offocussing the attention of the unconscious mind on achieving important goals. Includingachievable goals on the way to more ambitious goals demonstrates to the unconscious mind thatthe achievable goal, part of the ambitious goal is easy so the ambitious one will be achievable.ModellingNLP is borne of modelling and all this means is the development of models of excellent humanbehaviour. All of us learn in this way as young children and will have experience of adopting thestate, physiology, values and beliefs of people whose performance we wish to emulate. Learninghow to do this through micro muscle mirroring, breathing, posture and physiology enables newperformance to be modelled from others. This is a higher order skill which athletes already have toa large extent but is frequently at the unconscious competence level. The coachs job is to bringthis back to the conscious incompetence level for the sake of developing and applying the skills ofmodelling the excellence of others. Combine this with strategy elicitation and a whole newpowerful set of tools emerges which can create unprecedented levels of performance.Sports performance in an area where people can excel in so many ways. Not only can NLPapproaches bring about dramatic changes in sporting performance, but the processes usedimmediately give individuals much more choice and flexibility in every part of their lives with a setof skills insights and understanding which are highly relevant to every other aspect of their lives.Anyone wishing to really improve their sporting performance whether this is for leisure, competitionor career should be working with an NLP certified coach who has at least Mater PractitionerCertification. Any Coach operating at this level should seriously consider the benefits of helpingothers develop greater choice and flexibility in their lives through the medium of sports coaching.NLP is not just about helping to achieve therapeutic outcomes, demonstrating the path to
  6. 6. excellence and personal growth should always be a central aim.Andy is a certified NLP trainer who has trained with John Grinder, Carmen Bostic St CLair andMichael Carrol. After a long career in Special Education Andy specialised in working with Youngpeople with severe emotional and behavioural difficulties as well as leadership and managementas a headteacher. He works as a trainer with SimplyNLP.Me in the North of England. You canlearn more now about the high quality NLP training he offers at: http://simplynlp.meArticle Source: ====To truly achive ULTIMATE performance in ANY sport you desire, check this out... ====