Friday, April 22, 2016

Mental Preparation in Sport

Mental Preparation in Sport


In sport, we prepare our bodies physically for the battle of competition. Through daily practice and weight room sessions, we aim to prepare our bodies for the demands of our particular sport. We hope to build the correct muscles and tune or cardiac capability to handle the rigors of competition. Consciously or subconsciously, during our daily practice, we are mentally preparing ourselves for competition as well. Our daily preparense gives us a simulated preview of what we can expect when we enter into competition versus an opponent. We are building a virtual “bank” in our memory of partial scenarios that we can recall from in order to perform at a high level.

Basic Overview of How Memory Works
Memory is composed of two segments, long-term and short-term memory. Just as the names imply, long-term memory is the storage of abstracts of experiences that the short-term (working memory) deem to be relevant.1 As you routinely practice a particular action, your brain stores segments of that action so later during competition, it can recall from the long-term stored memories, relevant reactions to properly carry out an appropriate response.2

Sport is generally all about speed, the speed of action and reaction. An athlete who reacts faster to an action is more likely to have a positive result. This is why having a large amount of stored abstracts from routine practice is highly beneficial to an athlete. Often we see the athlete who puts in extra work during or after practice, experience success in their sport more often.


1 How Human Memory Works. (2007). HowStuffWorks. Retrieved 17 April 2016, from

2 Types of Memory. (2015). BrainHQ from Posit Science. Retrieved 17 April 2016, from


  1. I think meal preparation can be so helpful, especially with busy weeks. I think it can keep you on the right eating habits and can prevent from buying things you shouldn't be eating or wouldn't otherwise eat. Great article and good information.