Do You Feel Stressed During Games?
Do you feel “stressed” during games?
Think of a game where you felt butterflies in your stomach (stress) just before the start…
Were you energized by those emotions leading to a good performance or did your emotions overwhelm you and hurt your performance?
Stress gets a “bad rap” in soccer. Many soccer players view stress as negative and something to be avoided at all costs but that is not at all the reality of sport performance.
What is stress?
Athletic stress is a reaction to a stressor (parents attending a game, your opponents, discomfort, the score, playing with a slight injury or the competition itself).
Athletic stress is an emotional and physiological response experienced when an athlete encounters a challenging situation.
It is your response to this challenge that triggers how you handle stress…
If you perceive the competitive demands as greater than your ability then your stress response is prolonged, intense and hurts performance.
This “negative stress” ruins your performance and enjoyment of soccer.
What are the signs and symptoms of stress?
Physiological stress symptoms include: muscle tightness, sweating, “goose bumps,” upset stomach, elevated heart rate, jitters and fatigue.
Emotional stress responses include: nervousness, feeling overwhelmed or frustrated, difficulty concentrating, poor decision making, and reduced confidence.
Being aware of how you react to stress in games can help you manage the stress response and use it to your advantage.
Can stress help soccer players perform?
A little bit of stress, also called positive stress can be invigorating and energizing.
Small amounts of stress are beneficial for peak performance. Positive stress can ready you for the demands of competition.
That’s correct… “Positive stress” is not only beneficial but needed for you to perform optimally. For example, it can heighten your intensity and help you focus your best.
Try these tips to benefit from “positive stress” in games:
Tip #1: You want to focus on “controlling the controllables.” You may not be able to control all stressors inherent in games but you can control your reaction to those circumstances.
Tip #2: Change how you view stress. Understand that your response to stress can lead to a great advantage over your competition. When you experience the symptoms of stress, tell yourself, “This is good, this is a normal response… I am ready to compete.”
Tip #3: If your stress hurts your performance in the opening moments of a game and does not go away quickly, it’s probably negative stress based on fear of failure. In this case, you’ll want to contact a mental game coach to help you manage this.
Successful soccer players have learned how to perform with ultimate confidence in competition. We’ve developed Soccer Confidence, a Workbook and CD program to help you do this.
Learn Mental Game Secrets to Soccer Confidence!
Does your confidence seem to disappear when you go from practice to games and don’t know why? Do you get nervous and anxious in big games or when you are under a ton of pressure? Do you get so frustrated when you make a bad pass which causes your confidence to sink?
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Players: Get the mental edge by learning how to take control of your confidence, mentally prepare for games and perform with composure under pressure.
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What are soccer confidence customers saying?
“Our son plays academy level soccer. Jaki taught him how to focus on goals for each game and practice and understand that mistakes are necessary to grow as a player, and helped his perfectionism. We saw a noticeable difference within one month with improvement each month thereafter. He was more confident, happy, and was having fun again at soccer.”
~Linda, Ryan’s Mother
Do You Make Any of These ‘Costly’ Mental Game Mistakes?
Download our FREE soccer psychology report and discover if you make any of these ‘costly’ mental game mistakes that can block your success.
- How your soccer mind can be your best or worst asset on the field.
- How frustration and dwelling are your worst enemy.
- If you are using your soccer mindset effectively before games.
- Learn the important mental game of soccer skills you need to master to boost your confidence and performance.
What are soccer psychology subscribers saying?
“I have enjoyed and benefited from your emails over the past year or two. I have been a player, parent, and coach in soccer over the past 40 years. Thanks for the assistance with the mental game resources.”
~Kyle Congleton, Soccer Coach and Parent
Mental Game Coaching for Soccer Players
Master mental game coach Dr. Patrick Cohn can help you overcome your mental game issues with personal coaching.
You can work with Dr. Patrick Cohn himself in Orlando, Florida or via Skype, FaceTime, or telephone. Call us toll free at 888-742-7225 or contact us for more information about the different coaching programs we offer!
We look forward to helping you improve your mental toughness!
What are our mental coaching students saying?
“We try and spend 20 to 30 minutes a day working on the mental aspects of the game. My daughter is really enjoying it and feels it has helped and I know it has worked for her mother and I. I think you need to open a branch up here in Detroit, Michigan because there are a lot of parents and kids up here that need this information. Keep up the good work!”
~Scott Burgess, Soccer Parent