I am often asked by coaches how to get their athletes to perform when they are tired – and athletes are asking those same questions. When the game is long and is wearing on everyone, yet those crucial moments determine the outcome. If you have wondered about this idea of playing fatigued….this post is for you.
There are actually 3 components of endurance: physical, social, and mental
Physical endurance will come with more training and conditioning. Some athletes can count on their coaches for that. Those who can’t, be responsible enough to do it on your own. Remember, you must also put the effort into it in order to get the most out of it.
Social endurance refers to continuing to talk to your teammates and encouraging them. There will be times when you don’t feel too great. Those are the times when you should get out of your head by talking more to your teammates. It’s difficult to build someone else up when you are feeling down; therefore, one of the best ways to bring yourself up, is to bring someone else up. Focus on what they are doing right and praise them for that. When all else goes wrong, keep talking.
Mental endurance is built through mental skills training. At the end of the game when everyone is dragging, your mental endurance is a measure of how good you really are. Pulling yourself out and finding energy when you are beat down and tired is found from having trained mental toughness. This reveals your character as an athlete. Remember, it only takes ONE play to change the momentum – one ace, one steal, one tackle for a loss – and you get that one play with determination and heart. Be the athlete that is willing to go that extra mile for the team when everyone is tired and your team will draw from that energy. How do you get there? By becoming mentally tough through mental skills training.