Many athletes and performers struggle with anxiety, mental blocks, stress, nerves, pressure, and perfectionism. They spend hours only training the physical component and often overthinking with a “what if” mindset. We reach our performance potential, not by talent alone, but by training the mind to manage our emotions. At Maximize the Mind, we believe that developing the mental game and learning to think productively empowers people. We coach athletes, performers, and individuals to build confidence, comeback from injury, improve focus, communicate stronger, and be assertive.
Train Your Brain ● Develop Mental Game ● Unleash Your Potential
What is Sport Psychology & Will it Work For Me?
Sport Psychology involves how the mind influences you as an athlete and can hinder you or help you perform to your potential. An athlete often spends so much time training the physical components of the game then neglects training the mental aspect of competing. When athletes get to the elite level, most competitors have the same talent, the ones who excel are the ones who are mentally tough, can manage distractions, and are mindful of what they focus on.
Sport psychology draws on the knowledge from many related fields including biomechanics, physiology, kinesiology, and psychology. Sport psychology coaches teach athletes skills and techniques to use during high pressure situations that involve how the brain connects with the body. There are so many coping strategies that can be learned, and these tactics help athletes have a stronger mental game.
Could you be better if you knew how to react differently when things go wrong? What if you developed stronger confidence? What if you competed consistently in front of recruiters? What if you became more coachable and because of that got the opportunity to compete at the next level?
I know what this feels like because I still compete. I competed in multiple sports growing up, took time off & then found triathlon. I have had many injuries and wondered if I’d be able to come back. I have felt like I had to prove myself. I have been frustrated with the thought of not being good enough. I have held back. I too, I was skeptical if sport psychology strategies really worked. I I wish I had someone like me when I was younger. Once I learned what to do and started applying them, I became mentally stronger. I performed better. One of my favorite things is hearing athlete’s success stories. I have never worked with someone that I couldn’t help in some way.
You should look forward to competing. It should be fun. No one should feel tight or stuff or tense. No one should be afraid of getting embarrassed so they quit. You only have one shot at being a starter, getting a scholarship, or seeing if you can reach your potential. Will you get passed by competition?
The average competitor quits when it gets tough, but after you learn sport psychology tools, no more emotionally exhaustive competing. You’ll be in control and have authority that will improve your performance. You will have learned the skills that used to only be taught to elite athletes. Get back to where competing was fun and you can actually trust your talent. You could be mentally resilient, assertive, and have an overall better mindset.
How is Mental Performance Coaching Different?
Mental Performance Coaching is teaching sport and performance psychology concepts and research to individuals. The main difference between sport psychology and mental performance coaching is who you work with. The word sport psychology tends to appeal to athletes, but the tools learned can be applied to any situation. The phrase mental performance tends to appeal to all types of competitors. Think musicians, public speakers, actors, comedians, and professions like that. If you’re performing, you’ve probably experienced excessive nerves, questioning your talent, or worried about what others will think.
I’m trained specifically in sport psychology, but I like using the phrase mental performance coaching in my work because it sounds less judgmental or scary to most. I teach mental skills training to develop an effective mindset for success. I help clients mentally prepare.
This may apply to youth athletes, high school athletes, collegiate athletes, professionals, weekend warriors, business executives, sales people, attorneys, musicians, actors, speakers, or any other type of performer.
You would most likely hire a hitting coach, a strength coach, a nutritionist, a college recruiting specialist, or a tutor. You would also consider seeing a physician for pain, perhaps an orthopedist, or physical therapist for a specific injury or rehab. You may even contemplate seeing a psychiatrist for medication to concentrate or ease anxiety.
However, seeing a mental performance coach often wouldn’t occur to people. Hiring a specialist in the field of sport and performance psychology could give you the very edge you’re looking for. In education, students are taught core subjects, and in corporate training employees are taught the objectives of the position.
What doesn’t get addressed is the “how to be better, how to have an advantage, how to move up, how to cope, how to relate to others, how to communicate, how be more assertive, how to channel nerves, or how to handle stress” – now isn’t that what we all need? The difference between the average individual and the one who becomes a starter or moves to the next level is grit, motivation, energy, and courage – all of which are gained in mental skills training.
You’re not “crazy” for coming to talk to someone like me, in fact, you’re among the select athletes that acknowledge they want to be stronger. I’m not a therapist. I’m not trying to ‘fix’ you. I will teach you tools to enjoy competing. Nothing has to be wrong – talking to a mental performance coach means you want to get the competitive edge over others.
I’ve helped athletes and performers as young as 8 years old up to clients in their 60’s. Our imagination is our greatest tool and no competitor can truly know what we are thinking– so ask yourself, is it being used to ready your focus or is it sabotaging your performance? I believe we are successful based on how much energy is going into our performance – we can’t be great if we’re so worried about other things going wrong, constant comparisons, or playing the “what if this happens” game. I teach clients to compartmentalize more effectively and the result is astonishing.
Who wouldn’t want to be more confident and comfortable?
Want More Information?
Ashley Eckermann, MS
Sport & Performance Psychology Coach
16718 House Haul Road • Suite K
Cypress, TX 77433