Archive for June 5, 2009

Championship Psychology/Instinct

Posted in Championship Psychology on June 5, 2009 by bethleasure

Bird’s Eye View

30“I had the instinct and it worked.” Jens Voigt, One of the Heroes

In addition to sensory perception, champions possess a remarkable intuitive capability that incorporates both what’s happening AND what does the gut say to do? Much is made of animal instinct or killer instinct in sport. Human instinct is much better as it invites reason into its hasty processing. If probed about the basis of instinct for a spontaneous attack for instance, the victor will reveal reasons why gut feeling powered a podium result in statements like, “I knew I was too far out but my competitors were eyeing each other.”

Inside & Outside Yourself

Inside & Outside Yourself

Some champions are tuned to sense the dread of their competitors and can benefit in nasty weather, for instance. Sprinters can detect hesitancy in a competitor even while looking for opportunities to advance in gaps. The conscious and subconscious work together to form strong impressions. These urges are meant to be acted upon quickly. If you think, it’s too late is the mantra of some winners. Automation is considered the highest form of skill mastery. Yet instinct also takes over when a lack of knowledge or inexperience is present.

Champions seem to be born with an abundance of winning instinct; learning and improving this package of championship characteristics is necessary. Insight is a psychological and a spiritual experience and as such has room to develop since it’s as good as the information it gets. We are champions as much with our hearts as with our minds. The use of intuition is often developed in sports psychology by a visualization technique which takes you outside yourself. Like video of the peloton from a helicopter, this bird’s eye view senses the movements of prey and swoops at what may prove to be the right time. It reads the horizon.

Prayer for Ride Instincts
“…more or less by instinct…not imposed on us from without,but woven into the very fabric of our creation. There is something deep within…” Romans 2:14

“But the wisdom from above is…open to reason…” 31James 3:17 

We are endowed with ability to make judgments based on intangible as well as tangible indicators. We confess we suppress this inner voice at times. We ask that our instincts be guided by reason.

Ponder Do I listen to my gut? Affirm I teach my body to follow my gut with a quick OK from my brain when appropriate. Watch from without and from within to know how to make winning moves.

30“Voigt wins on instinct,” by Gregor Brown in Varese, Giro d’Italia feature, May 30, 2008

31The Message, Copyright © 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 2000, 2001, 2002 by Eugene H. Peterson and Revised Standard Version of the Bible Copyright © National Council of Churches of Christ in America