T Nation

Sports Psychology and Strength Coaching


#1

Can any of the strength coaches or any coach who works with athletes answer a few questions in how they use sports psychology in their field of work? I am a student currently studying sports psychology? Any input would greatly appreciated?

  1. How do you keep your athletes motivated?

  2. Do you have a sports psychology background? If so, how do you use it in your field of work?

  3. What procedures do you take when an athlete injuries himself or herself? What if the injury is career threatening?

  4. What are some of the signs and symptoms that you monitor in the athlete to avoid the overtraining syndrome?

  5. How do you approach goal setting?

  6. At what point in the strength and conditioning season is the athlete most susceptible to overtrain and why?

  7. When is training arousal good and detrimental to performance and how do you make note of it when the athlete is training?

  8. What strategies do you practice to make the athlete adhere to a strength and conditioning program?

  9. Do you use imagery techniques in your field of work?


#3

Im going to take a shot at most of your questions:

How do you keep your athletes motivated?

Keep workouts fresh and always looking to show growth even if its something small. Small movement in strength always leads to bigger gains in the future.

Do you have a sports psychology background? If so, how do you use it in your field of work?

No do not have a degree but have some excellent doctors in the rolodex to use for resources.

What procedures do you take when an athlete injuries himself or herself? What if the injury is career threatening?

When an athletes injured if it happened with you as the trainer you need to evaluate your methods, if its a freak injury then you may prepare for a conversation differently then a neglectful injury. Here you are open for a lawsuit. As far as career ending, my job is to train the athletes and motivate them, in this situation I may include doctors and close family members to assist in the plan moving forward.

What are some of the signs and symptoms that you monitor in the athlete to avoid the overtraining syndrome?

I often have athletes who think doing double sessions is a great way to get stronger but in reality they are moving closer to injury. With young athletes I tell parents do not allow them to train unsupervised, with college and pro’s its a conversation. Usually at the higher levels they understand the purpose of rest adn recovery

How do you approach goal setting?

Start with attainable goals and see how the small attainable goals can drive the larger more broad goal

At what point in the strength and conditioning season is the athlete most susceptible to overtrain and why?

Off-Season, because athletes want to load so much weight and try to gain so fast they often will try to over work. Athletes in season often have a tighter schedule therefore over-training is less likely to occur

What strategies do you practice to make the athlete adhere to a strength and conditioning program?

Write out program and have them train as much as they can with me. If they are on their own then I may add small assessments into the next sessions to see if they are doing what I am asking on their own. I am constantly assessing athletes the minute the walk in.

Do you use imagery techniques in your field of work?

Sometimes if needed, I know i was having issues with my depth on the squat many moons ago and a sports psychologist had me watch film on rocket ships. It was to allow me to see how a rocket ship takes off and on the way up it generates a tremendous amount of power, so yeah in certain situations I may use imajery to get a point across.

Well I hope these will assist you in your answers. If you have further questions leave them here and i will try yo answer them

Jim