Why Sport Psychology for Dressage?
May 20, 2012
As the world of competitive dressage becomes more and more popular, each point that we earn or lose in competition becomes more critical. Sport Psychology helps ensure that the rider does not waste any of those precious points due to a lapse in their mental performance.
Sport Psychologists consider the equestrian sports to be one of the most psychologically demanding of all of the sports. This is because half of the competitive team is a very large animal that can be very unpredictable. We all admire the mental toughness of athletes such as golfer Tiger Woods. Yet how mentally tough would Tiger be if he was never sure, on any given day, whether his golf club might want to spook at the ball! Retaining strong mental and emotional resilience despite this unpredictability is a tremendous goal. Yet our mental performance is something we do have a great deal of control over in this unpredictable sport.
There are many ways in which Sport Psychology can help the rider’s performance. In the following months we will examine ideas around each of these areas. Here are some of the common ways that Sport Psychology can contribute to your dressage performance:
SeanaAdamson Ph.D, is a psychologist specializing in Sport Psychology for equestrians. She is a United States Dressage Federation Gold Medalist, and the author of “Memorize That Dressage Test: A workbook of mental games to improve focus and flow” (seanaadamson.com).