August/September 2021 - 17

Mental Training
QUESTION 5: HOW CAN A PLAYER
REGAIN LOST MOMENTUM?
If players recognize that a match
or game is moving away from
them, can they re-group? The key
to reversing negative momentum
includes the following:
*
*
a winner, but made a bad play that
I can correct next time I am back
on defense, " that player can regain
momentum.
Recognize what thoughts and
activities are occurring when they
are winning or playing well.
*
Be cognizant on the court or
field when there is a problem.
When things go wrong, players
will often tend to put the blame
on the referees, the weather, or
another player instead of taking
responsibility for their own play.
*
Don't accept a lack of
momentum.
* Be totally single-focused.
*
Learn how to get rid of their
" stinkin' thinkin'. " If a player
feels like a loser after a bad play,
in his/her mind, he/she is a loser.
But, if that athlete thinks, " I am
Journal each day about the
mistakes made and the positive
factors achieved in a practice/
game.
*
Make it a habit to compliment
or encourage a fellow teammate.
One of the quickest ways to regain
momentum is to praise others.
*
Use bench time to study
opponents from a different
perspective and personally
strategize new behavior to be
implemented when inserted back
in the game.
QUESTION 6: HOW CAN A PLAYER
LEARN TO PLAY IN THE ZONE?
Entering the zone might sound
like something from Star Wars, but
it is not. Only a few athletes enter
the zone state because they refuse
to step beyond their natural ability
or push themselves beyond what
has been comfortable for them. But
if athletes desire to have optimal
performance, they must be willing to
step out of their comfort zone.
To get into the zone, athletes
must abandon their tendency to
be defensive. Humility is key here.
Humility listens, humility thinks of
others. The players' focus should be,
" How can I contribute to my team, "
rather than " What's in it for me? "
Striving for game momentum
and getting into the zone takes
much work. But the reward is
well worth the effort. Those goals
are achievable if an athlete truly
desires to play at Level II. However,
to achieve this objective, other
pleasures must be held at bay. The
choice is up to the individual athlete.
Momentum is not a result of luck but
rather is a product of commitment to
personal goals set. n
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August/September 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of August/September 2021

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