Duke Professor Visit
Sports teams look to exploit every available advantage over their opponents. Brainerd High School took a step toward winning the mental game on Tuesday. Duke University’s Director of Sport Psychology and Leadership Programs visited Brainerd to speak with coaches, players, and parents. Doctor Greg Dale spoke with the three groups about how to get the most out of high school athletes.
Dale began his Brainerd visit with a lecture to about 40 coaches. His main points included how to relate to kids, effective communication, motivation, and establishing and maintaining credibility. Dr. Dale told coaches to always tell kids what they should do, rather than what they should not do in order to maintain a positive focus. Along those same lines, coaches should also refrain from public criticism, swearing, and sarcasm. By staying positive, coaches can increase the athletes’ confidence, which in most cases, is very fragile.
Dr. Dale spoke with about 80 athletes about the mental side of sports. A large hurdle for kids to clear is moving on from a mistake. Dale offers visualization tips for athletes. Dale wants kids to utilize their mind as an asset, instead of a liability.