My wife and I have really enjoyed hosting professional racquetball athlete Marie Renee Rodriguez for the past 10 days. We spent a considerable amount of time working on developing a training program, practicing weight lifting, spending time on the court, discussing strategy, practicing emotional control, and analyzing her game. It was a busy period but we both gained much from the experience. Be sure to click on her name and keep up to date with her career progress!
Have you ever thought about buying a fitness tracker (accelerometer) such as a Fitbit but didn't know which one to buy? Dr. Shelley Holden and I recently wrote a short article on what things you should consider when making the decision. The publisher has made this article free to the first 50 people who click on this link. If you have specific questions about fitness trackers, please send me a message. I'd be happy to answer any questions.
I interview World Natural Bodybuilding Federation World Champion Dr. Brian Whitacre about many topics including what makes a champion, training, nutrition, visualization, the psychology of posing, and juggling life, work, and sports.
I spend a couple of minutes discussing the excuses given by athletes and coaches to justify NOT getting sports performance help. Here I equate it to why we don't want to go to the doctor.
I had the pleasure of interviewing 5-time racquetball world champion Rocky Carson about a variety of topics including training and competing on the International Racquetball Tour. The picture is from when we first met back at the International Racquetball Federation - IRF World Championships in 2010, where this picture was taken.
Supplements are a $40 billion business, and with so many products on the market, what should or shouldn't we buy? In this video, I explain eight methods used to sell supplements and present ways to make better decisions when purchasing supplements.
"I just remember getting back to the athlete area, to an empty room. And it just being like a devastating feeling. I wanted the Games to finish surrounded by friends and family, hugs, everyone happy, but it was the exact opposite. I finished it by myself in an empty room with nothing but disappointment." Mat Fraser 2nd Place, 2015 Crossfit Games
Do you get that same gut wrenching feeling when you don't achieve your goal? What are you going to do differently to avoid a repeat? At GOAT Sports Performance I analyze your strengths and weaknesses to build an individualized plan that takes you from being good to becoming your Greatest Of All Time. Contact me for more information. Photo by Rogue.
When you compete, your mind has a variety of things or cues that you need to be focusing (or attending) to. Cues include information such as how you feel, what your opponent is doing, and information about your environment. There are many, many cues available, some of which are irrelevant, and your mind must be able to distinguish between what is and is not important. You do this subconsciously, but consciously recognizing them can be important. Cues might include:
Some sports have a stable environment and do not change (e.g. an indoor tennis court where weather and temperature are stable), which allow you can concentrate mostly on cues that are about you and your opponent. Others have an unstable environment that changes such as in golf where the weather and course might change rapidly. Recognizing relevant cues allow you to determine what you need to do for optimal performance. For example, if you recognize cues indicating that you are tiring quickly you can alter your strategy to slow down your game. Conversely, if you notice cues that suggest your opponent is getting tired you can change your strategy to exploit it.
Your performance is highly dependent on being able to focus on relevant cues and ignore irrelevant cues. Irrelevant cues are those that you focus on when you should not. For example, you might be thinking about the crowd watching, or what you plan on doing after the match, or if you remembered to pack everything. If this is the case, your attentional focus is too wide and your attention has been drawn away from what you should be attending to. Because the brain can focus on only a limited amount of information, your chances of missing a relevant cue are higher and you may make a mistake.
Alternatively, you may not be focusing on enough relevant cues and your attention has become too narrow or focused. This means that you might not be noticing cues that could help you. For example, if your attention is too narrow, you might miss that significant flaw in your opponent’s game. If you do not notice it, you cannot exploit it.
The trick is ensuring that your attention is on what it needs to be. If you catch yourself thinking about irrelevant things during a match then your attention is too wide and you need to narrow your focus. Conversely, if you seem to be missing things going on in the game and feel a little out of the loop, you may be too focused on a few cues and not attending to all the important cues.
Recognizing the role attention plays in sports, and being able to control its range to suit your needs, is essential for competing with the optimal attention span. How to control the range is a separate challenge, and I will present some strategies to help in a later edition.
In this short vlog, I share practical examples of the sugar content in sports drinks and sodas. This is important for all athletes, parents, and coaches to watch, so please share this video on to people who might benefit.
In this vlog, I explain why people don't use sport performance experts and why they should.
Should we wear compression socks for athletic performance? I share my views on an article recently published.
Over the past two years, I have been writing a book, which was recently published and is now available on Amazon. I’ve had a few books published over the years, but this one is a little more special to me. Educators and researchers across the sport, health, and exercise fields will use this book because it teaches how to prepare and publish peer-reviewed articles. Peer-reviewed articles are typically those that are published in academic journals and have been reviewed and approved by other professionals as well as the journal’s editor.
So why is this book more important than my other published works? Well, it couldn't have been written without the authority that comes from having had so many articles published across sports science. In order to have been given permission to write this book, my book proposal was sent out to other experts in the field to determine whether it would be well received. It was also used to evaluate whether I had the knowledge and experience to be considered an expert. Only then would a publisher take the chance of agreeing upon a contract, as publishing is always a financial risk to the publisher.
As you can see for yourself, my proposal was supported, and here we are. But what does this book in particular mean to GOAT Sports Performance? It means that those employing my services can be sure that I have the knowledge and experience to help. It means that others in sports science accept my authority as an expert, and it means that publishers are willing to trust my knowledge and experience by putting their name on the front cover.
This book is more than just a book. It’s evidence of my credentials.
An article appeared recently in a variety of news sources making bold claims: “Good Sports: Longer Lives Linked to Swimming, Racquetball” said one headline I saw. It wasn’t long before similar headlines bounced around social media as a means to justify participating in one sport or not participating in others. Essentially, the news article I read suggested that playing racquet sports and swimming leads to a longer life than if playing other sports such as soccer or participating in fitness classes.
But we have to be careful how we interpret journalistic headlines and we need to understand the background behind the scientific discovery. Having written so many scientific articles and seen journalists and others create “eye-catching” headlines from my work to manipulate what I wrote to catch the attention of their audience, I understand how dangerous this can be!
This is why athletes, coaches, and those working in sports organizations need to utilize the services of experts and scientists to take what science has discovered and interpret it and apply it correctly. Without doing so, mistakes or misinterpretations are made that can be costly. Although this headline above is just an example that I’m using, headlines like this show up all the time.
Let’s go back to the headline that I just mentioned. One would assume that the article then mentions racquetball right? Well, no, it doesn’t. At no point in the article did the writer reference racquetball again. Yet many people will assume that longer lives are linked to swimming and racquetball because of the headline. But that isn’t what the original research said!
Here is a link to the original scientific article. Within the article there are several mediating points that should be noted (there are more but these are the main ones in my opinion):
It’s difficult to make wholesale conclusions from one study, but media outlets do have a tendency to do this. They sensationalize information without clearly placing the information within the specific parameters in which the study was conducted.
My point is not to suggest that some sports are bad for you or that others are better for you. Really, the study’s actual findings aren’t that important for the point I’m trying to make. My point is to highlight how necessary it is to have scientific experts in your corner to provide guidance when you, your athlete, or your organization is trying to perform at an elite level.
Headlines are everywhere, especially when it comes to diet and nutrition, and taking information at face value can be detrimental to performance. Sports performance should be based on science, but it should be based on science that works and can be applied within the context of the experiment.
Be careful how you interpret headlines. Search for the facts, and if you need help, contact someone who can help you get it right, which ultimately leads to better outcomes. That’s what GOAT Sports Performance is all about: becoming the best you’re capable of becoming.
Stay current with my professional activities and recent articles.