Building Sports Self Confidence

A coach can help in building sports self confidence. Just as low self confidence can affect your relationships and career, so can it affect your performance in sports. Lack of self confidence is the greatest barrier that prevents sportsmen from achieving their peak performance.

“Brad-I don’t win matches on grass.”

-Andy Roddick to Brad Gilbert. just before winning ten matches in a row, on grass, at Queen’s and Wimbledon in 2003

(taken from the book 'I 've Got Your Back' by Brad Gilbert. Brad has guided Andre Agassi and Andy Roddick to the coveted number 1 ranking in the world.)

A coach can help build self confidence in sports by using the following strategies:

>>Train players to think and create “realities” that make them feel more confident during the course of the match. For example, for a tennis player, if the warm-up is n’t going well, a confident player will believe that he is saving all the great shots for the actual match. On the other hand, if the warm-up is going fantastic, the confident player will believe his playing form will sustain and carry over into the match. >>Challenge your players’ assumptions regarding an opponent or a match situation. The player should never assume that a match is lost till the last shot has been played. In football, if a team is down by 3 goals at half time , the players shouldn’t assume that they have lost the match already.

>>The player should have the confidence to change their game in line with the demands of the situation. In tennis, if the opponent is returning all your returns from the behind, try something different by rushing on to the net.

“Negativity is like the common cold. You can catch it in a minute."

-Tom Chivington

We all have our limits, but no matter how optimistic we are, we don’t really have any idea exactly where those limits are. A sportsman has certain arrogance to be believe where his limits are. He needs to have some humility as well to accept that the reverse could be true also.

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