Mental preparation for the 2014 Winter Paralympic Games

Jeffrey Martin
Clinical Journal of Sport Medicine 2012, 22 (1): 70-3

OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this review is to describe how Paralympians can prepare for the 2014 Paralympic Games through mental skill use.

DATA SOURCES: A search of adapted physical activity, sport psychology, and disability-specific journals was conducted along with electronic databases (eg, ArticleFirst) using the terms sport psychology, Olympics, Paralympics, psychological and mental preparation and skills, imagery, visualization, self-talk, anxiety, confidence, and performance enhancement. Reference lists from relevant articles were then used to continue the search. No constraining dates were used.

RESULTS: A review of the results from both qualitative and quantitative research on Paralympians, Olympians, and elite-level athletes suggests that mental preparation and mental skill development can help Paralympians enhance their performances.

CONCLUSIONS: Sport psychologists can help Paralympians develop mental skills to manage the unique stressors of the Paralympics to increase the odds of having superior performances.

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