Do you have a Game? Notice two Factors!
The requirements of competitive sports during the race or on the day of the race can be summed up in two words (!): Energy and concentration. Two concepts that interact and create the conditions for ideal performance.
The energy that the athlete is called to “bring out” in the game is the necessary element to achieve his goal. It refers to the athlete who is active, in mental and physical readiness, with intense effort and perseverance, being in the best possible condition. It includes all the physical elements, which have been worked on during the year and give the athlete the opportunity to perform to the maximum. Although in the first phase it is considered a result of the athlete’s physical condition and physiology, nevertheless the release of energy is largely related to his mental state. Factors that determine the amount of energy that the athlete will “allocate” in the race, are his mood and desire to compete. The goal that has been set, the “why” to fight. Without a goal there is no direction and no way for the athlete to transform his work into activation. His mood is affected by his potential anxiety, doubts he may have developed about his level of readiness, fear of fatigue and lack of self-confidence. In such cases the athlete sees the race as something huge and himself weak in the face of the enormous dimension he has given to the race. Preparation is put in jeopardy, doubts develop, anxiety develops, one becomes vulnerable and underestimates oneself. For the doubt, Nietzsche had emphasized that he “poisons you without killing you”, meaning that with doubt you can participate in an activity, but you will not be in the best possible emotional state. Well prepared, the athlete has the ability to dispel any doubts, feel confident and “allow” himself to release the necessary energy. In the race you go with what you have, nothing more-nothing less and with the confidence and the goal to do what you can. The American swimmer with the world record of 8 gold medals at the 2008 Olympic Games, Michael Phelps, when asked before the games about his goal, had answered: “I would like when the games are over, reviewing my performance, to be able to say that I gave what I had to give, then I will be absolutely happy “. This is how the best athlete of all time judges success, simply chasing his “ideal” self.
When the athlete has achieved the accumulation of energy then the “only” left is to be focused. It is possible that he has prepared well but did not perform what he can because he failed to concentrate. It is necessary to emphasize that the gathering is not a process of the last week: there is a gradually evolving situation, the culmination of which is the struggle. In order to be able to concentrate 100% during the week of the race, it is necessary to be 99% a week earlier! Achieving concentration is perhaps the most difficult “technical” element that an athlete has to work mentally. However, it works and develops. But it requires desire and a plan! Requires spiritual work during preparation. There are many factors that affect concentration, it is inextricably linked to mood as the emotionally positive athlete concentrates more easily and beneficially than the athlete with doubts and negative thoughts.
The positive of the above elements, whether they concern the preparation of the athletes or the conditions of the race is that they are a personal choice of everyone and their improvement certainly goes beyond their personal capabilities, as long as there is a desire and a plan!