Get the Most Out of Your Performance with Mental Strength Techniques

We’ve talked a lot about sports psychology tactics, but in this episode Dr. Brian Zuleger explains how to effectively apply them to your performance.

Mental strength techniques like visualization and self-talk are not going to make you stronger. That’s a point frequently made by people who don’t see a value in sports psychology—and the fact is that they’re right. So then why do them?  

The answer is simple: a racer can arrive at the start line with the strength to win the event, but what’s ultimately going to determine their result is whether they have the mental fortitude to tap into their full power or if they mentally collapse before the gun even goes off.  

The tactics taught in sports psychology allow you to make the most of the strength you have, and once athletes start practicing these techniques, many discover just how much of their physiological gifts they weren’t using before.  

RELATED—Episode 175: Lessons on Race Targeting, Goal Setting, and Mindset, with Olympians Svein Tuft and Erinne Zarsadias 

Dr. Brian Zuleger is a sports psychology graduate professor at Adams State University. He teaches the graduate program in sports psychology for coaches that our own Grant Holicky graduated from. In this episode he explains how to best optimize mental strength techniques, including:  

  • Why we shouldn’t just visualize ideal outcomes, 
  • The importance of goal attainment instead of goal setting, 
  • How to use more instructional self-talk and leave the motivational self-talk to Stuart Smalley, 
  • Tips for building self-confidence. 

Joining Dr. Zuleger, we also hear from Professor of Physiology Dr. Ernst Hansen, and author of The Brave Athlete, Dr. Simon Marshall.  

So, visualize yourself listening to the best podcast episode ever, and let’s make you fast!