LSH blog - mental pressure


This summer has really highlighted the mental pressure that elite sports men and women are under when it comes to performance.

Emma Raducanu, the youngest British woman to reach the second week of Wimbledon, had to withdraw from her match due to an on-court panic attack. Ben Stokes, England’s star cricketer, is taking an indefinite break to prioritise his mental well-being.  Champion gymnast Simone Biles has had to pull out of several events at the Tokyo Olympics, in order to protect her mental health. I read a story this morning about Tyrone Mings, England defender, talking about the doubt he faced and how his mental health plummeted during the recent European Football championships.

The demands and mental pressures are relentless when you are playing sport at this level and the cumulative effect of a pandemic has really brought this sharply into focus.

The mind-body connection is key in sport and should never be underestimated. It creates a powerful platform to develop resilience, balance and calm. The body achieves what the mind believes – so if your mind is racing with doubt and fear, it will create havoc with your confidence.

Sport and The Mental Pressure

So is it possible to change a negative or fixed mindset? The short answer is yes! And this applies to anything, not just sport.

  • A fixed mindset creates feelings of doubt and a lack of self-belief.
  • The fixed mindset manifests itself in the subconscious mind.
  • The subconscious is the driving force of our behaviour and emotions.
  • Hypnotherapy will calm the subconscious to reduce the cues of a threat and create a place of calm and safety.
  • Hypnotherapy enables you to link the mind and body.
  • When we mentally relax, we physically relax and then we perform better.
  • Hypnotherapy can shift a fixed mindset into a growth or winning mindset.

Without doubt, all the golfers, cricketers, tennis players I work with say the same thing. That overthinking, pressure and nerves affect their ability to perform. Hypnosis uses visualisation techniques. This enables you to see yourself how you want to be, playing well and confidently. This then strengthens the neural pathways and will have a really positive impact on how you play and enhance your natural ability.

Talking openly about the mental pressures and mental health awareness in sport is hugely encouraging and if any of this resonates with you and you would like to achieve that “flow” state in your sport, or in life, then do please get in touch for an online appointment.