By Jerry Mooney
Participating in sports is a hobby for some, and a lifestyle for others. However you view your attitude towards it, you can’t deny that participating in sporting activities is a wonderful way to stay active, have fun, connect with others, feel like a part of a team, and more. There are untold benefits to spending time this way.
However, spending time playing a sport isn’t as fun if you’re just not getting the hang of it. You can expect to be an amateur when just starting out – not everybody is naturally ‘talented’ but it can be learnt. That being said, this can put many people off. A few games of football or basketball that have gone terribly may be enough to put somebody off playing for life. But fear not: while you can’t expect to be an expert in your first few games, you can get better really quickly with the right advice.
In this post, we’re going to talk about the secrets that can help you to master any sport in a matter of months. They may seem strange, but it won’t hurt to try them – before you know it, your name could be up there with the greats.
Read on to learn more!
Practice And Plan
The first thing you need to make sure you’re doing, is practicing and planning your approach to the sport. Now, you may have heard of the 10,000 hour rule, that claims anybody can become an expert at anything after 10,000 hours practice. However, recent studies have found this to be false. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t practice. Ideally, you should practice the skill you’re looking to learn for at least a small amount of time every day. This can mean planning when you’re going to practice, if you struggle to fit the things you want to do into your day.
Set goals when you can, but make sure they’re realistic. What do you want to accomplish in the first week? What about the second week? Where do you want to be in a few months? Reaching for the stars is great, but you don’t want to say you want to be able to a slam dunk while playing basketball in your first week if you’ve never played before. Find the right balance between challenging yourself and being realistic. With goals, you can tick them off and see how far you’ve come. Some don’t agree and say that goals aren’t productive, so it’s up to you to figure out what actually motivates you to work hard and do better.
Visualization is used by so many athletes and people in other professions to get better at their chosen skills. Want to be able to do a pull up or 10? Visualize it. What does it feel like? What muscles is it working? How do you feel after you’ve done it? Feeling the feelings you expect to feel during and after what you want to accomplish is the key to successfully visualizing. They say this works because it tricks the mind into thinking you’ve already accomplished something. The mind can’t tell the difference between what is real and imagined, so the more you imagine yourself doing something, the more your mind will strengthen those neural pathways that will help you along the way to doing it!
Get The Right Equipment
Don’t get this point confused with the ‘false starts’ that many people make when trying to achieve something new. They think that buying a new fitness gadget or a pair of sports shoes will make them a world class runner when they’ve never ran before in their lives. Unfortunately, these things often go unused. However, buying the right equipment once you’ve stuck with a certain sport for a while can definitely help you. If you want to be the next Tiger Woods, look at Golf world for your next club. If you want to be the next Arnold Schwarzenegger, look for some great shoes, straps, and other bits and pieces to support your heavy lifting.
Lucid dreaming is even more powerful than visualizing, although it can be much harder to achieve. A lucid dream is a dream in which you realize that you’re dreaming. In these dreams, you can then stay lucid and make whatever you want happen. Why not practice your chosen sport in your dreams, and repeat affirmations to really get it into your subconscious that you’re the next awesome sportsman? This is something else that takes practice, but it really works!
Play Video Games
Video games have been scientifically proven to help with things like coordination and focus when used in the right amounts. It doesn’t even have to be a game based on your chosen sport!
Practice Multiple Skills At Once
Apparently, practicing just one skill at once is a mistake. This makes the brain commit certain things to short term memory, when we want them to be committed to long term memory. Learning multiple skills at once is thought to be the best way to remember things.
Work On Other Areas Of Your Life
If you’re trying to master a sport but you’re not working on areas of your life that complement it, you’re not going to do very well. For example, you want to be a sports legend, but you’re not getting the right amount of sleep each night? Then it’s probably not going to happen!
Get A Mentor
A mentor is a great way to get better at a sport. These people not only care about your sports performance; they can look at your life objectively and give you lots of ways to improve. Take your time in the hunt for a mentor, and remember that this is another investment in your personal development.
Get Comfortable With Being Uncomfortable
The key to getting better at something is to get comfortable with feeling uncomfortable. You need to be ok with feeling exposed, vulnerable, and a bit silly. These are good feelings and will help you to improve and grow!
Which sport will you master using these tips?