Routines Help Prevent Dumb Mistakes


by Sean McCann, PhD
US Olympic Committee
Performance Services
Sport Psychologist

Under greatest pressure, athletes begin to leak energy, and become more vulnerable to a variety of distractions and challenges. When an athlete is preparing intently for a key performance, the last thing they should be doing is making critical decisions. Unfortunately, I have seen Olympic medals lost by athletes who decide to try something new, based on a decision made under pressure. An effective routine keeps an athlete busy, productive and reduces the probability that the athlete will make a bad call, making a mistake that they cannot recover from.