One day, before entering the training field, the coach asked us to stay in the locker room; It was a delicate moment of the season and on Sunday we would have to meet a team fighting for the scudetto. After a few minutes of waiting, between jokes and laughter, from afar I heard an animal knock (I thought of a dog right away, maybe because I got the phobia). And my fears were immediately confirmed: our coach entered a Rottweiler in the locker room and, without speaking a word, let the animal grow (even angry enough!) For a few moments to us. His message was clear: on Sunday we should have the same attitude as our guest; We went down to the field and started training. “If I have to be honest personally I did not take it very well … more than the” dog anger “the situation underlined my” dog fear “and that is why I in every In the case of the dog I would have preferred the mythical phrase of V. Boskov: “Come on! Come on! Warm cold heart head! ”
In sports, the motivations of an athlete can make the difference between achieving or missing established performance goals.
In psychology there are various classifications of motivations; The classic distinction between Intrinsic Motivation and Extrinsic Motivation seems to me very appropriate to qualify the athlete’s mental attitude in the performance of sports performance.
An athlete with a strong intrinsic motivation plays for the pure pleasure of doing it, fun becomes the engine of his agonistic participation and the sense of fatigue is reduced.
Extrinsic motivation, on the other hand, characterizes athletes who in the sport especially seek external recognition through positive or negative reinforcements (awards or punishments).
Another possible classification of the types of motivation concerns the so-called Orientation to Task and Orientation to the Self:
A task-oriented athlete wants to confront himself and finds pleasure in learning new abilities, noting his improvements.
A self-centered athlete, on the contrary, seeks to demonstrate his ability primarily through confrontation with others, will therefore feel only when such a comparison is conducive to him. It will therefore be indifferent to the possibility of improvement, but will be motivated by the desire to magnify your ego.
Some research has confirmed a positive relationship between task orientation and intrinsic motivation; Subjects with both of these characteristics are defined in “Internal Control” psychology; They are people who interpret events as a product of their own behavior.
While those that make events dependent on other factors (luck, fate, etc.) are defined as “External Control”.
Beyond these classifications it is beyond doubt that communication, both with oneself and with others, must be certain, detailed and direct.
Certain communication is obtained by using verbs as imperative; The detailed one is intended to give ourselves and the other precise and detailed information because the mind of each of us needs precise elements for them to be realized and the direct one serves to communicate with one another immediate and the other the objective pursued , The desire to be realized and obtained using expressions like “I want this thing”: “That’s it! and that’s that”.
Indecision, doubt, fear of failure to do so, uncertainty and lack of clarity are the main obstacles to our performance.
In fact, the indecision of the messages that we give to ourselves and to others depict the possibility of expressing and expressing others
better. Only by my determination will I be able to influence the determination of others. The determination and the conviction of the coach is “almost for osmosis” to his players; Sometimes this belief (obviously optimistic) seems to distract madness but it is when “the impossible becomes possible” that the strength is born to overcome our limits. For this I will never forget an extraordinary night at the Stadio S. Paolo in Naples:
So many years have passed but I still feel the thrill of the crowd on my skin and the emotion of having lived that special evening:
“It was a night game against Zeman’s team, the first time ended with us under two goals and” satisfied “the result, the passive, in fact, could have been much heavier:
We had taken a “doll” ever seen. In the long run (which at that moment seemed to me to be very long), a subway that led us from the field in the changing rooms I kept thinking about the many occasions of the opponents’ goals and above all I had many questions (self-talk): “how do we argue” is team? “; “the
Cut outs who absorbs it? “;” Who gets the mezzala that fits in? “;” How long do we have to run behind these assassins? “.
Certainly in my head had created negative representations, but I challenge anyone in such a tourbillon to think positive. Meanwhile, I finally came to the locker room: I sat down in my seat and looked at the rest of the team: low heads and no one trying to open my mouth a little bit of anger, a little disappointed but, above all, because we needed to retrieve Breath, we were in apnea.
After drinking a glass of hot tea, he went in and thought, “now we are massacred” and instead, without giving any technical / tactical indication, he said: “From the young men, now let’s go back and win 3 to 2 !!” “Sure! Sure!” To say that he had surprised the whole dressing room seems to me ridiculous. Yet the effect on all of us was immediate and extraordinary; Already the return journey to the field was completely different, that subway that only seemed to me infinitely 15 minutes ago now seemed much shorter, so much was my desire to resume the game immediately. But in my head I was just thinking, “Is my master a madman or a magician?”
The race started in a different way: even with a slight decrease in tension between Zeman’s men, we quickly reduced the distance. The more time passed and the more conviction of
To be able to retrieve the game. And even after doubling our attitude did not change, we did not go back one meter, yet after such a first time we had to match that match
Could already be considered a great achievement; But the mister told us that we would win 3 to 2 and then boldly look for victory. The wind had obviously changed, but to force our push, in addition to the warmth of an infuriated and enthusiastic saint, was precisely the possibility of materializing the “prophecy” of our histrionic technician.
That was how we won the incredible match in the last few minutes. Just as our “trainer” / “communicator” had planned, that night, certainly, a bit “sorcerer”.
Official thesis of Coverciano Training by communicating by Fabio Pecchia
This post is also available in: Italian