Hello Swim Team and Adult Fitness Swimmers!
We are now in the waning acts of this current summer/Long Course season. As discussed last week, the goal with the coming posts leading into the early fall will be to improve the mental side of swimming. Being physically strong is only part of the battle. What makes the best swimmers - or athletes in general - is a mental edge, a competitive drive that fuels success. Examine Katie Ledecky, Tom Brady, or Cristiano Ronaldo, for example. These athletes have been at the top of their respective sports for quite longer than the average duration. What sets them apart from their peers? It doesn't just boil down to their physical preparation. They have built a mental fortitude after much training that has afforded them their longevity. With that said, let's continue this week to the tune of "Mindfulness".
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Let yourself become an agent of your own success. Let's start the journey to building your mental fortress by becoming more attentive to ourselves. In the throes of a hectic world, as the last 2+ years have been nothing short of surprises, there comes a necessity to analyze the self. With mindfulness, we have the opportunity to concentrate on that which just "happens". We JUST breathe; our hearts JUST beat; our blood JUST flows throughout our body. These are all processes of the autonomic nervous system that will JUST happen, as long as we are alive. Now, after I say this, you may start thinking about your breathing, but the point is, these processes happen mostly without our knowledge.
Take the opportunity to focus on your heart, your lungs, your fingers, and your toes. Continue to learn yourself in the most basic way possible. What this does is creates a greater Emotional Intelligence. Amplified awareness and emotional intelligence not only allows us to mediate our feelings, but also provides a precursor to effective training. This includes but is not limited to having greater coordination, understanding the "pieces" of our strokes, and the competitive edge of our idols which we all desire to emulate. Create your own success story, and become more mindful in the process.
Fact of the week: According to neuroscientist, Dr. Amishi Jha PhD., in her book, Peak Mind (2021), a person can become more mindful in just 12 minutes a day. This distinction was made after studies of multiple sports teams during practices, most notably including the Miami Hurricanes football team. With values objectively adjusted for attentiveness level and duration of focused mindfulness practice, it became clear that the more teams practiced these skills, the less their focus waned. Our mental strength is the independent variable; and our physical ability and competitive edge is often the dependent. Start with mindfulness, and you may be surprised with the results. How does my swimmer move up? Our group promotion standards are your guide to growing and graduating! Promotion times can be achieved in practice or swim meets. We prefer to see them happen at a swim meet! Find your zone, and gain that mindful balance! Thanks as always for joining us each week! The Sigma Team