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  • 16 June 2016 00:00
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Emotional Intelligence in Sport: Because better people make better players

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There are growing concerns that athletes are entering sports academy and performance pathway environments and not developing the personal life-skills that are essential for optimising health, wellbeing and success after sport.

MIND research (2014) recognised the nature of the current "reactive” approach to player mental health and wellbeing. Some sporting organisations provide training and education to coaches and staff in mental health first aid, recognising signs of mental ill health, and supporting individuals who are suffering mental health problems. 

There are currently very few examples whereby academies are proactively developing psychological and psychosocial skills of their players, to enable them to thrive in and out of the academy environment. Hence, there is a need to develop education and support programs for academy set-ups. 

Dr Jenn Bennett, Chartered Psychologist, Consultant, and Associate at Switch The Play, is currently developing a package of workshops that focus on developing the person within the player; providing the skills required to thrive in any context, under any pressure, in face of any challenge, and through any change. 

Workshops will be tailored to meet the needs of the context and group, and will cover six major areas of psychological development:

- Human Functioning: how thoughts, feelings, and emotions drive behavior.
- Values Identification: what drives and blocks motivation, passion, and fulfillment?
- Confidence: where does it come from, and how it can be protected? 
- Emotional Resilience: developing emotional awareness, literacy, and resilience.
- Individual Differences: Perception, interpretation, communication, and learning.
- Winning Mindset for Life and Performance: identifying your optimal emotional state.

Jenn is also collaborating with Switch The Play colleagues on research that seeks to build a better mental health care pathway in professional sport, supporting human development and emotional resilience. Click here to find out more, or contact Jenn.


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