The mental health and well-being of athletes has always been relevant through the history of sports. Issues such as race, gender, and sexual exploitation have created political protests and conversations that have reached the Olympic platform. Depression, anxiety, drug abuse and disordered eating are just a few of the clinical aspects that elite athletes struggle with just like everyday people. Fortunately, and as of recently, popular media has begun to open the door to the previously mentioned issues. However, these are just some of the human challenges competitive athletes face on top of the mental performance areas to compete, win and find success.
The main concentration of mental training emphasizes specific psychological skill development learned systematically over time to promote performance improvement through behavior change, awareness, and general well-being. Athletes can find within themselves the tools to proactively cope with many life stressors they face as humans. All the while, athletes learn new mental skills for performance demands to reach their athletic potential as individuals and teams.
WellU Mental Training has discovered that mental training and sport psychology interventions should be structured in a systematic and methodical way. Different phases of a comprehensive mental training program include assessment, interpretation, systematic goal setting, action planning with targets and objectives, implementation, progress monitoring, mindfulness awareness, and evaluating. WellU combines mental skills training content into 7 main categories: Confidence, Focus, Nerves & Emotions, Resilience, Motivation, Communication, and Self-Awareness.
As with all helping professions, the most effective approach is one in which the support connects with you as a human first. In order to truly establish a connection to your training with a coach or program, you must establish trust and rapport so that you can unpack the barriers and layers positioned between you and your potential. For example, WellU offers free introductory 20-minute video coaching sessions as you progress through the content to provide person to person guidance in applying the content to your sport performance and training. If you decide, you can personally connect with a mental coach online to access further one to one comprehensive mental coaching.
Your success is highly correlated with your wellness in and out of your sport. WellU is a mental training program that allows you to find consistency in your performance, connect with other athletes, share stories, and improve the relationship you have with yourself. We have found that younger generations of athletes require a greater sense of connectedness and access to supportive mental skills training and mental health. The greatest purpose to a mental training program is to provide (1) global access to guided performance based mental skills training and (2) a gateway to better access in discussions of athlete mental health challenges. When this is accomplished, the WellU athlete steps into their own greatness.
Author: Brian Alexander | Date Published: 8/15/2019
Brian Alexander, MA, CMPC is a mental coach and co-founder of WellU Mental Training. He works with the USA Men’s Water Polo team and in private practice with athletes, coaches, and teams at the youth, high school, collegiate, professional, and Olympic levels in sport. Please visit www.welluapp.com to download the WellU app and start your mental training program.