Psychological Skill Training in Football

In sports you are only as strong as your mind, for the mind can push even an injured body to victory. The mind is also the key when it comes to helping your body recover faster. Psychological skill training is the process that involves training athletes to learn psychological skills that help in the process of relaxing and regulating their mind. 

We recently conducted a webinar on this topic with the help of Parth Parasher, RFYC's Lead Sport & Performance psychologist. Parth detailed out why psychological skill training is one of the most important factors in sports and went on to show how athletes who learn these psychological skills are able to enhance their performance.

He elaborated on how the whole training revolves around the importance of 5Cs as they define the framework for the player’s mental development. The webinar explained its importance using the chart below:

 

The session then progressed to talk about how the three components are interconnected, and so it becomes a necessity for a player to strike a perfect balance amongst them in order to keep improving themselves.

Parth then shifted the focus to how 5Cs enable in player identification and development through a consistent psychological approach. The session condensed the process in the following manner:

  • Profiling (to identify psychological talent and priority areas of development).
  • Intervention (strategies to develop the 5Cs).
  • Evaluation (evidence and agreement of psychological development).

The session then went on to talk in detail about the 5Cs and their area of impact. Here's a brief summary: 

  1. Commitment: It affects motivation, self-determination, responsibility, striving for success, fear of failure. Makes the player strive to give 100% in training and matches, and helps them to show determination to complete goals and hunger to master new challenges.
  2. Communication: It affects interpersonal skills, influencing momentum, leadership and helps in keeping teammates focused and acknowledges communication. It encourages and raises the intensity of the team when the momentum is negative, and makes them actively seek feedback from coaches and players to improve performance.
  3. Concentration: It affects attention, focus, skill acquisition, skill breakdown, decision making and helps the player to show relentless focus on the task at hand and accurately recognise cues or triggers to act. It also helps in developing good situational awareness.
  4. Control: It affects self-regulation, emotional management, coping, composure, poise and helps the player to keep calm under pressure. Also helps them to recover quickly from positive or negative emotions/experience and does not let the player dwell on disappointing performances.
  5. Confidence: It affects self-confidence, self-efficacy, self-esteem and helps the player to believe in his ability to perform under pressure. Also helps them to perform without fear of any negative evaluation or criticism.

Parth then went on to talk about how in football, coaching is an essential component of an effective professional development program. He talked about how proper coaching can impact the will, skill, knowledge, and capacity of a player and can directly influence his intellect, behaviors, practices, beliefs, and values.

He then explained the progress model for coaches and educators that can help them in understanding its significance. 

He concluded the session by summarising how Psychological skill training is the key which can unlock massive performance benefits and increase the longevity of an athlete's playing tenure.

In case of queries or if you have any suggestions for webinar topics, please feel free to connect with us on Instagram/Facebook or email us at info@rfyouthsports.com.

Psychological Skill Training in Football

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