1w6k1b99tnjW5qLK9QKgJCiG0NE The SportExcel Zone: Knowing the Zone

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Knowing the Zone

As a high performance specialist, getting athletes into the Zone is as exhilarating for me as it is for them. That’s because, as a trainer, I have to be in the Zone in order to do it, and it FEELS good. The transition in athletes is amazing and easy for me to see, but they have to feel it.  Recently, after only one training session, a figure skater and her mother returned for a second visit with huge smiles on their faces. Had she won a national championship? No. But, her wide smile and great posture would be her way of carrying herself from now on, on and off the ice. I could see the change the instant she walked through the door into my office. But could she FEEL it?

Some years ago, an athlete’s mother sent me some photos she had taken of her son between skeet shooting stations at the USA Shooting Fall Selection Match. When I’d first met this young man, he had had little confidence and would rarely look at me as we spoke. The picture told a different story. It was taken en route to his winning a berth on the National Development Team. I could see the change in him, but could he FEEL it?

After the GM of a baseball team grew tired of watching his team melt in tight situations, he gave me a call. His skillful and motivated athletes, who were young off-season college players, lacked the maturity and mental toughness of ex-major leaguers they were playing against. They were easily intimidated and looked pitiful whenever they fell behind in a game. In only a couple of workshops, with new confidence fueled by the Zone, they turned an average season into a championship one. I could see the difference, but could they FEEL it?

Being in the Zone is an incredible, on-going, personal, exhilarating experience. It is an emotional and empowering state of mind that is as relevant to a sporting career as it is to a job in medicine. To outsiders you display an incredible sense of confidence. Personally, you just know that you are going to do well. You FEEL it.  Read more  

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