Wednesday, February 27, 2013

PRO TIPS: How to stay calm under pressure

(Photo credit: Sean MacEntee)
You are on a 9 bagger going into the 10th frame and your knees are shaking and your heart is beating twice the normal rate. You have a chance to shoot 300, what do you do? How do you respond when you find yourself in this situation? The way you respond has a lot to do with trial and error. The most important thing is to stick to your routine and isolate each shot that you make. You cannot focus on whether or not you carry a strike, but try to remain in the same frame of mind that helped you get to that point. If you think of the penalty of not striking you will put too much pressure on yourself. Accept the fact that it is natural to feel nervous under pressure but that you must learn how to still be able to function even when you are nervous. Try to narrow your thoughts down to the one or two things that help you to make good shots.

In my case I have a tendency to muscle my armswing, so I have to focus on letting the ball drop freely into the downswing. I also try to make sure I fully extend through the shot at release point. Through trial and error the good bowlers learn how to develop a mental game plan that fits there temperament. Some people have to keep talking to others to stay loose. On the other hand some bowlers need to isolate themselves more to try to stay focused. You have to rationalize to yourself that the only thing I have control over is whether I make a good shot and beyond that I cannot control my luck. If you do not strike the world will not come to an end and you can simply try to do better next time. 

Do not become obsessed with the score but absorbed in shotmaking. I am sure that if you incorporate some of these ideas you will eventually get that 300 or surpass you highest score. 

Some Suggestions:
1. Concentrate on breathing deeply.
2. Think of something relaxing like your favorite song.
3. Stay away from negative conversation.
4. Visualize one of your best previous shots.
5. Narrow your thoughts to the one or two things that help you make good shots.
6. Keep a determined attitude that you will make the shot you need under pressure. 

More Pro Tips:

Monday, November 19, 2012

Gear for the Championship Game

Well, I think everyone would agree that it was another chaotic week in college football! No. 1 ranked Kansas State dropped to No. 6 after getting killed by Baylor and Oregon went from No. 2 to No. 5 after losing to Stanford in overtime. The two losses helped Alabama inch their way back up the BCS Standings right behind now No. 1 ranked Notre Dame. I have a lot of faith in Alabama and think it’s safe to assume they will be playing in the BCS National Championship Game. Since I’m confident in my assumption, I went ahead and purchased some new Alabama apparel to wear for the big game. Check out what I bought: 

Since I don't have a black Alabama hat, I thought it would be a good purchase.

The Alabama shirt I picked out is a performance t-shirt which will make it good to wear while working out too.  

I got these Alabama sweatpants just because you can never have too many pairs of sweatpants. 

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Jayhawks in Switzerland

Taking a look at the Kansas Jayhawks today, I found an article about something you wouldn't see 10 years ago. The Kansas Jayhawks are currently traveling around Europe playing European national teams as a part of their training for the upcoming season. The Jayhawks first started off by playing Switzerland, narrowly beating them twice by 3 points each time, and then loosing twice to France by 1 point then by 19 points.

I can't think of a better opponent to learn from than European teams. They have widely different styles of playing, and all European teams are much better than they were 10 years ago. Kansas can only learn from these teams, and will certainly improve their defense to take on dynamic and diverse teams in the regular season. I always wondered where those teams stay while traveling around Europe. I believe they were in Interlaken for a game, and I wonder if coach rents out an Interlaken hostel for them or if they just sleep on the bus. Their basketball team certainly bring in the most money for their school, so I can imagine they have an athletic budget to be treated like royalty.

Regardless, I think playing European basketball is a great idea for Division 1 teams. It will make US college teams better and make basketball even more popular in Europe.