Why sports psychology is important

Being a student-athlete has been found to be very stressful and can have very negative effects on someone’s mental health. Due to this, sports psychologists have been more commonly found on coaching staffs and the study of sports psychology has been popularized. 

Sports psychology (the study of how psychological factors affect the way an athlete performs) is a relatively new study of psychology. The first laboratory was created in the 1920s in Berlin, Germany. It slowly started to expand after that.

Sports psychologists can help with many issues that athletes can face during their careers. They can help with performance anxiety. A lot of athletes are affected by performance anxiety. They have a fear of failure and fear of embarrassing themselves. Sports psychologists find ways to help athletes to overcome these fears. 

Athletes can also need help shaping their mental skills. This is the most common role a sports psychologist plays on a coaching staff. They help an athlete enhance their performance by improving their focus, intensity, composure, confidence and by establishing trust in the process. These skills can be focused to help an athlete prepare for a certain game or practices. Not only can these skills help the athlete in their performance, but they can also help with aspects in everyday life. 

An injury can affect an athlete not only physically, but it affects an athlete mentally too. Returning from an injury can be very difficult for some athletes. They can be scared to play and reinjure themselves, or have “mental scars”. These mental scars can last long after the injury is fully healed. Sports psychologists can help the athlete return to a preinjury mindset and intensity. 

As an athlete, it is important to keep a good mindset and always be positive. Sometimes they need help, and that’s where sports psychologists come in to help.