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Sports Psychology

by Matthew Hilger |  Published: Dec 14, 2011

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Sports psychology is the study of how psychological factors affect performance. Similar to sports, poker is a game where psychology plays a major role in the outcome. My publishing company released a book by Travis Steffen titled Peak Performance Poker. This book looks at how diet, nutrition, and exercise can impact one’s cognitive abilities. There is also a chapter on sports psychology where Travis discusses popular techniques such as self-talk, countering, affirmations, and visualization. This article includes excerpts, by permission, from that chapter. The thoughts we have about ourselves internally, both positive and negative, are called “self-talk”. We’ve all got varying degrees of positive and negative self-talk, and it really does have a great effect on our stress levels, frame of mind, mood, and performance. Self-talk, if done effectively, has been shown to enhance self-confidence and reduce cognitive anxiety levels. Controlling your self-talk so that you’re thinking logically, positively, and ...


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