sport psychology

I am a footballer [soccer].

Could anyone please recommend a good book or video on sport psychology? IE getting a better mindset before games so you are calm under pressure. Visualising yourself executing a skill perfectly… I read a study somewere, where they got a group of basketball players. Half of them practised a type of shot for one hour a day. The other half visualised themselves scoring that type of shot for one hour a day. At the end of the time period the ‘visualisers’ improved by a much larger margin!! :confused:

Anyway, I think it will benefit me alot, because while I am injured I will still be able to work on my game. And when I’m not doing normal training if im not injured i will still be able to work on it anyway!

So can anyone recommend a book/video or should I go to a professional first? Many thanks. :slight_smile:

Visualization is great, but I feel if you aren’t mentally prepared from your training, a book is not going to do it for you. I think watching film can be good for many sports, as can visualization/meditation mixed for short periods, especially before your workouts.

In the end, confidence from quality workouts is the ultimate way to success and positive mental imagery.

Yeah, i want something to do when I can’t train… If I dont train I get depressed so if i knew that i was doing something worthwhile [mental training] i would be happier.

You need to get your mind right. If you are getting depressed just from not training, maybe something else needs to be taken care of. Watching film and visualization is great, but if it is all that your time is focused on, burn out may occur (especially during injury periods).

Find a hobby, read some books, meet friends with similar interests that can help you with both your soccer and relaxing a bit. Life does not end at training here–being the complete person is important for optimal training and recovery.

There’s a lot more to sport psychology than just visualization. For some quick articles, there’s:
which is mind training for swimmers.
For books I recommend:
which I read and learned much from. The swimming one is mostly quick tips and nuggets to work with. Dr. Loehr’s book is meant to be worked through. Don’t just skim it, take the time and do the work.

IMHO, psychology is the most overlooked area of performance. Read the articles and . . .(can’t resist)

Free Your Mind.

Thanks HEAPS for those, i’ll be sure to read through the article. I will definately look into getting the book too.

Davan - I know what you mean. All I think about is training. If I can’t train I get an onslaught of depression. I have tried many ways of fixing it but its hard. Begining to learn meditation has helped a little. Self talk and trying to think positive outcomes in my mind has helped a little as well. Meditation is the best though. Its very difficult, but when you have a good meditation you feel so much better. I also spend 30 minutes a day learning spanish [I would love to play football in spain one day :smiley: ]. Is that enough? I know they are all related to becoming a better footballer in some aspect, but surely meditation and learning spanish is a good enough mental break?

Thanks alot.

  1. Schmidt, R. (2004). Motor learning and performance. Human Kinetics
  2. Orlick, T. (??). In pursuit of excelence. Human Kinetics.
  3. Weinberg, Gould(??). Foundation of sport psychology. Human Kinetics
  4. Maxwell Maltz (196?). Psychocybernetics. ???

Go to and browse psychology section (book n. 1 is a must)
I hope I helped…

Thanks alot. I have alot to read!