Habits of Excellence: Work, Fun, or Both?

Wade seemed to be having a rough day.  This kid normally dominated our Opti practices, winning the favored end with ease, exhibiting almost flawless boathandling, and sailing clean.  But today he was starting late, sometimes from the unfavored end, and he was spinning for hitting marks.  And yet he had a smile on his face as he overcame a [...]

2017-09-27T22:53:35+00:00 By |Performance, Sailing|

Get SMART about setting goals

Goal setting can be a useful tool in many arenas. Experts say that 90% of the time, setting specific and challenging goals leads to better performance than “do your best” goals or none at all. Goals can direct attention, mobilize effort, increase persistence, and help you form good strategies. Famous sports figures such as Olympian Michael Phelps have achieved [...]

2017-09-05T16:19:19+00:00 By |Career, Life, Performance, Sailing, Teams|

Honing Your Mental Game

Sailing is a unique sport with many facets. Success comes from overall training plan encompassing development of technical expertise, boat speed, strategy, boat handling, tactics, physical training, and mastery of the mental game. In interviews with Olympians, professionals, or other top athletes, successes or failures are often attributed to cognitive or emotional experiences. Elite sailors control as many controllables [...]

2017-09-25T13:11:52+00:00 By |Performance, Sailing|

Mental imagery works!

You can learn to use the same mental imagery skills that elite athletes use to achieve peak performance. Mental imagery is the practice of seeing (and feeling) in your mind's eye how you want to perform a skill, as if you were actually doing it. It's a popular sport psychology technique that service members can take advantage of. You [...]

2017-09-05T16:19:40+00:00 By |Performance, Sailing|

With process goals, outcomes follow

It’s good to think big. Whether or not you fully achieve long-term dream goals, chasing after them can allow you to accomplish other big things along the way. Your goals should be relevant to you with your own unique path. Understanding the different types of goals and how they affect you can be one key to success. Dream goals are one [...]

2017-09-05T16:20:12+00:00 By |Performance, Sailing|

Best routines are not routine?

Warfighters especially need the ability to make quick and accurate judgments without having to think about them deliberately. You can hone this skill using techniques employed by top athletes: They use routines to help shift their attention—away from stressful anticipation of how things are going to turn out—to focus instead on what’s most important in the moment. In other [...]

2017-09-05T16:20:17+00:00 By |Performance, Sailing|

Build Your Mental Game Early

After Thomas Biesemeyer finished 13th in super G at the 2013 World Championships, he articulated the benefits of training basic mental skills before reaching the elite level. “For the longest time, your goal is to make the national team,” he said. “When you get there, you’re like, now what? Transitioning to World Cup is like starting all over again. [...]

2017-09-05T16:20:22+00:00 By |Performance, Sailing|

Sportsmanship and Communication are Key

Frostbiting in Lasers, the guy in front of me hit the weather mark. Thinking perhaps he hadn't seen it, I let him know, "You hit the mark!" He did his penalty, but for the next leg and a half of the race course, he screamed at me, telling me to sail my own race. I felt the impulse to [...]

2017-09-05T14:52:26+00:00 By |Performance, Sailing, Teams|

Training Your Brain in the Off-Season

If you take some time off this winter, that doesn't mean that you have to stop training altogether. Serious sailors do physical conditioning in the off-season, but what about mental conditioning? One skill I frequently tackle with sailors is mental imagery...seeing in your mind's eye what it is you want to do, whether it's big picture strategy, sailing new [...]

2017-09-05T16:12:45+00:00 By |Performance, Sailing|