Olympics frenzy is in full-swing as the world turns its attention to the 2012 Summer Olympics currently underway in London. Over the next two weeks we'll be hearing plenty about the events and the athletes, but what about the role that psychology has to play?
Sports psychology has become an increasingly popular subject within psychology in recent years. It probably comes as no surprise that this particular branch of psychology has an important role to play in the Olympic Games.
In past games, sports psychologists have been employed to help athletes achieve their full potential, practice visualization techniques, and manage the anxiety that comes with having the entire world's attention.
"Helping athletes to create their 'flow' experience, manage the multiple stressors of preparation, dealing with unexpected events, managing team 'pressures'/distractions, facilitating optimal communication between coach-team-athlete-support staff, and dealing with loss and setback are all part of the 'skill-set' that cannot be easily taught....but must be mastered in order to be effective as a sport psychologist at the Olympic Games," explained sports psychologist Chris Carr, Ph.D., in a Psychology Today article.
If this type of career sounds interesting to you, be sure to check out this article on careers in sports psychology.
Are you interested in applying some of the techniques and strategies that sports psychologists use to help Olympic athletes to your own life? Learn more about how to improve your concentration, motivation, and performance in these resources from Elizabeth Quinn, About.com's Guide to Sports Medicine.
Image by Phil Walter / Getty Images