Improving Your Mental Game in The Off Season

Improving Mental Toughness

How to Get The Most Out of Your Off Season

What do you do during your off season? Do you attend clinics, practice with private coaches, or spend hours and hours improving your fitness your own?

Off-season is where many athletes seek to improve and try to gain an advantage over their competition.

Many athletes will revamp their technique and focus even harder in an attempt to raise their game to the next level.

Many golfers visit golf pros or swing coaches to “perfect” their swing…

Baseball and softball players attend college camps or hit the cages regularly…

Tennis players will spend extra time on the court working their serve…

Lacrosse players will bring their sticks with them everywhere they go in case a brief opportunity arises to throw the ball around…

Soccer players look for pick-up games every day of the week.

Unfortunately, many of these athletes find themselves at the same level as they were during the previous year.

To these athletes, all those hours of off season work seemed to be a waste of time and they start the season mentally worn out and even more frustrated.

There is a more effective method to feel rejuvenated and motivated while being more prepared to make the jump to the next level.

First, the offseason should consist of being “off” for a part of the time.

You need to take some time to re-energize and the best way to do that is to take a break from your sport. You may feel a break will set you back a bit or allow other athletes to leave you behind.

Actually, the opposite is true. A slight break gives you time to recover mentally and physically from the long season, give you a better perspective on how to improve and help re-ignite that passion you have to compete.

A second method that helps you make the jump to the next level is the opportunity you have to work on your mental game.

During your off season, you can evaluate your season, set new goals and identify mental skills you want to improve.

With the competitive pressure off and minimal distractions, you can make steady progress towards strengthening your mental game.

University of Iowa cross country runner, Lindsay Welker, has a unique perspective on the off season, one that has helped her be mentally prepared each season as well as contributed to her success as an athlete.

WELKER: “The long season takes a toll on us. It’s meeting with the sports psychologist, regaining confidence, and doing things away from your sport to rejuvenate and get your mind right and love for the sport back during the non-competitive period.”

Your off season sets the stage for a fresh start to the new season.

So ask yourself these two important questions:

“How will I take advantage of my off season?”

“What can I do during the off season to strengthen my mental game?”

The most effective way to have a breakout season is to start the season both mentally refreshed and prepared.

Improve Your Mental Game in The Off Season:

Start by assessing your mental game strengths and weaknesses…

  • What aspects of your mental game hurt your performance during the year?
  • Did you lack confidence?
  • Did you get too anxious before competitions?
  • Did you find that you lost your focus at certain times during competition?

Here are five options to help you improve your mental toughness for sports:

  1. Contact us to get a short one-page test to identify weaknesses in your mental game. Email for the one-page test.
  2. You can also read sports psychology articles on my blog about how to improve your mental game: Sports Psychology Blog
  3. Subscribe to my YouTube videos: Mindset For Sports
  4. Contact us about personal mental game coaching: Contact Us
  5. Improve your mental game with one of our audio and workbook programs, such as “The Confident Athlete.”

Related Sports Psychology Articles:

Free Mental Toughness Reports

Get instant access to a mental game report to improve your mental toughness. Are you making one or more of these “deadly” mental game mistakes prior to competition? You can improve your mental game with one of our free sports-specific reports below.

with our free mental toughness reports, you’ll:

  • Discover if you have positive or negative pregame jitters.
  • Identify your pre-competition mental game mistakes.
  • Learn the important pregame mental skills to boost your performance and success!

Learn how mental game strategies can boost your mental toughness in sports with Dr. Cohn’s free mental game reports!

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