What Is Sports Psychology?

Sports psychology is concerned both with helping individuals obtain maximum benefits from sports and physical activity and helping athletes enhance their performance. Read on to find out more about the practice of sports psychology and its applications. Schools offering Human Behavior degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Is Sports Psychology?

The field of sports psychology focuses on the influence of sports and activity on individuals. Sports psychologists examine different benefits that can be gained from sports as well as how psychological factors affect sports performance. According to the Association for Applied Sport Psychology, the main goal of the discipline is to help individuals attain both optimum performance and enjoyment from sports.

Important Facts About This Field of Study

Degrees Certificate in Sport Psychology, Bachelor of Arts in Sport Psychology, Master of Arts in Sport & Performance Psychology, Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology with an emphasis in sport psychology
Common Courses Consulting methods & practices, exercise psychology, team dynamics
Online Availability Both fully online and hybrid programs available
Continuing Education Board certified sport psychologists must take 10 units approved by the American Board of Sport Psychology every 2 years

Uses for Sports Psychology

Sports psychology might be used by coaches, professional athletes, professional trainers, personal trainers, Olympic athletes and psychologists. For athletes, sports psychology might be used to enhance performance. For non-athletes, it might be used to gain psychological benefits that are believed to be related to sports and physical activity. Some examples of common sports psychology techniques and their uses include:

  • Team Building: Coaches might use team building exercises to build cohesion among team members.
  • Concentration Control: Helps individuals focus and maintain mental intensity.
  • Anxiety Management: Breathing exercises, meditation or other techniques might be used to control stress.
  • Mental Practice or Visualization: Individuals use their senses to create or re-create experiences in order to mentally prepare for an event.

Careers in Sports Psychology

Careers in the field of sports psychology include academic positions and clinical or applied practice. Academic careers focus on teaching and research. Clinical sports psychologists have training in counseling, and they help individuals deal with specific issues. Applied sports psychologists typically work with athletes to enhance training and performance.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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