Frame of mind

An athlete’s mentality of their sport affects how they play


In the world of sports, most people who are successful seem to be the most physically fit. That is kind of the whole point of exercise, to be in shape. Being physically active helps an athlete perform to the best of their ability. 

But being physically fit isn’t the biggest factor in being a great athlete. It’s only half of it. The other half comes from an athlete’s mentality. 

Mentality and mental health are two different things. Mental health is someone’s emotional and psychological well-being. Mentality is how an athlete talks to and about themself. 

Playing sports can be extremely stressful, especially when someone is a student-athlete. There is a lot of pressure to perform best in the classroom and on whatever field or court they play on. This is where an athlete’s mentality comes in. 

According to an article written by Oklahoma Wesleyan University, an athlete’s stress and pressure can affect how they perform in a game. The more stressed an athlete is, the less focused they are on the game. This can detrimentally affect their performance and even cause them to get hurt. 

Another thing that causes athletes to struggle is their self-talk. An athlete is their own biggest critic. Whenever they get down on themselves about a mistake they make, it creates a mental block that can easily spiral into worse mistakes. 

According to McLeod Health, an athlete’s self-talk can improve focus and slow the brain down so that more power can be put into the actual physical activity. Using positive affirmations during games can help an athlete overcome even the hardest struggles. 

It is proven that when athletes have a better mentality toward themself, they perform better in the game. It’s now up to the athletes to balance between physical and mental training. Once that balance is found, there’s really no limit to what’s possible.