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Author Topic: Mental Toughness  (Read 5881 times)
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« on: March 09, 2009, 12:35:46 PM »

So when all is even between two teams, it's the team that can maintain focus and has the greater desire to win that will come out on top. I've been in so many games where the underdog team on paper have won and it can be all put down to mental toughness.

Not only is it the captains job to guide his team tactically, but also to make sure the team plays to their full potential. What do you as a captain do to make sure the team stays together when it's a tough game, or you are a few points down? What time out talks have worked in the past? Or what has worked for you as someone on a team to make you believe you can beat that team that are seeded so much higher than you?

One thing that has worked for me and my team in the past is breaking big games into smaller ones. Games to 3...next point wins...games to 5 etc. These can be done no matter what the real score is and can help keep focus. Theres no shortage of internet sources for mental toughness in sports but what have you experienced?

http://ultfris.blogspot.com/2005_04_01_archive.html (for example)

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« Reply #1 on: March 09, 2009, 08:01:30 PM »

I promised to shout my entire team a round if we kept the opposition scoreless. That worked pretty well!!!

On a more serious note though, I find fostering a good team dynamic to be a major factor. If you feel like a team then you'll play like a team. If you just rock up to a field and everyone does their own thing to get prepared and you all just wander out on to the field then you're not going to play as well. On the other hand, if you warm up together, throw together and come together for a team talk before the game then you're going to perform better as a team.

Other than that, if you're in a leadership role then lead by example. Encourage your teammates and follow your own instructions. If someone makes a bad throw then get in their ear and tell them to get their head up and get on D and so on and so forth.


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« Reply #2 on: May 01, 2009, 11:45:09 AM »

It has to do with unity.  Everyone needs to know that they are playing and fighting as a team.  That gives each person the motivation to lay it all on the line each time. 

Its easier to give up when you feel you are only playing for yourself, if you know you're playing for a team you are less likely to give up as you don't want to let the team down.

Unity can't be created over night, it takes time and chemistry.  You need to practice together, hang out together, warm up togethere, win and lose together.  Over time you'll become one unified force. 

When you already have unity and are a team there are a few tricks I have picked up and used to boost morale just before a big game.  The last thing I did was bring black paint for under the eye (like you see football and baseball players wear).  We had the team line up and we went down the line like a little ritual to put on each players paint.  No player was allowed to skip it, we needed everyone on board.  Some how this little gimmick gave us a huge boost and really drew us together.  The simple black face paint coupled with alot of cheering each other on gave us an upset victory 15-5 against a top seeded team. 

Another thing I'll do when we're behind and need defesne is I'll ask for volunteers to go into the game.   Right after we score and we are subbing in/out I'll rally the troops by asking for volunteers go out there and play the toughest D they can. In this case I want the guys on the field who are pumped up to go get a D.  Since defense is such much about heart and pure effort this will very often work.  If we can then follow it up by a quick score it can energize the entire team and then pretty soon you have everyone on the team pumped up to go out and play supressing defense.  Its about getting into your teams head and finding the right people who are able to get the momentum going.   
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« Reply #3 on: May 04, 2009, 07:17:41 PM »

I agree, unity and playing for your team is something that helps you play well and play hard.

Even things like skipping out on spirit games when your team is joining in is destructive to team chemisty. Though that would be more for a uni mixed team, i doubt there are many mens teams out there playing spirit games after a match  Grin
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