Sport psychology is the science of the high-performance mindset. It is the study of how our brains contribute to our successes and failures, and how to train our minds to perform at our fullest.
After decades of research, sport psychologists understand the intricacies of how environment, teammates, and mental climate can affect performance. We’ve learned, for instance, that the ability to maintain confidence when under pressure and to stay motivated in the face of adversity is one of the foundational mental skills of elite performers.
Even though sport psychology is mostly studied in the context of athletes, the science of performance is applicable to any kind of performance, whether it’s working in high-stakes business environments, playing music, or auditioning for a role. Sport psychology is also regularly used when there’s nothing wrong with a specific performer. Much like throwing a pitch or strength training, mental skills are always practicable and improvable.
Common skills that performers seek to improve are confidence, motivation, concentration and performing under stress. Common techniques include self-talk, visualization, relaxation, sleep improvement for improved energy, and routine building.
Dr. Jonathan Fader has spent over a decade working with such performers. Currently the team psychologist for the New York Mets, he is a certified consultant by the Association for Applied Sport Psychology and a resource doctor for Major League Baseball’s Rookie Development Program. Through practical strategies Jonathan helps athletes and teams to achieve improved results.