Overcoming Jitters: How to Deal with Sports Anxiety

All athletes experience anxiety when it comes to game time. Some players may experience nerves, heart palpitations, and sweaty palms. This hyperarousal response can be beneficial in some instances, as it can help psych up players for the game. However, in some cases, sport performance anxiety can be detrimental and affect the athlete’s performance on the field.

One solution to reduce anxiety is to prepare appropriately before the game. Athletes can make a check-list that will help them organize their gear and necessities. This preparation can give them a sense of control over the situation and can help to reduce anxiety.

Another way to alleviate jitters is to develop a pre-game routine. Athletes can practice stretches, visualization techniques, and breathing exercises to help relax their nerves. Visualization can also be utilized to picture successful performance during the game. Coaches or trainers can help with these techniques to ensure proper execution.

It is important to have a supportive environment. Teammates and coaches can help ease anxiety by providing encouragement and support to the athletes.

Lastly, create a positive self-talk routine. Instead of focusing on negative outcomes or what if’s, athletes can focus on positive affirmations to help them gain their confidence and focus.

Even professional athletes experience sport performance anxiety. It’s important to note that it’s a normal and common experience among athletes. By preparing appropriately, developing a pre-game routine, creating a supportive environment, and engaging in positive self-talk, athletes can overcome their anxiety and perform to the best of their abilities on the field.