Effective Coaching Practices from an Athlete’s Perspective

It’s amazing what a coach can learn from our athletes’ feedback!

Joan Hung was recently invited to share what effective coaching practices look like from an athlete’s perspective, at the recent Youth Coaching Conference (YCC) 2022.

I have been coaching Joan since 2015 and am proud to share her candid and light-hearted stories about her Goalball journey, and my coaching practices. There are many lessons here on resilience that can be generalized to any sport and anyone.

Joan and I are also grateful to the National Youth Sport Institute (NYSI) for providing us with an opportunity to share about disability sports, and to Brenda for helping Joan put the presentation deck of slides together.

“I did not choose to be blind but I can choose how to live with it…”

Joan Hung, National Goalball Player and recipient of Goh Chok Tong Enable Awards 2021

Check out the presentation below!

Unhelpful Thinking Styles

Cognitive distortions or unhelpful thinking styles refer to the way our minds convince us of something when it is most likely to be false or inaccurate. These false perceptions frequently perpetuate negative thinking habits, and they may cause serious damage to our confidence and ability to succeed.

Everyone experiences cognitive distortions to some degree, especially during times of stress. For example, an athlete under competitive pressure might be constantly distracted by thoughts related to how everyone will look down on him if he loses. A sales executive may conclude that she is a failure for not being able to meet the quarterly sales target.

There are different (but related) cognitive distortions, and these include: 

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Achieving Flow in Sport

Hungarian-American psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, who popularized the term Flow and demonstrated how anyone could achieve focused contentment, died recently. In light of his passing, I felt compelled to write this post as his work has profoundly influenced both my life and coaching philosophy.

The Psychology of Flow

Flow is a state of mind in which a person becomes fully immersed in an activity. In this mental state, people are experiencing joy as they become fully involved and focused on what they are doing.

Mihaly Csíkszentmihályi

“The ego falls away. Time flies. Every action, movement, and thought follows inevitably from the previous one, like playing jazz. Your whole being is involved, and you’re using your skills to the utmost,”

Mihaly Csíkszentmihályi
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