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Performance killers: Not managing athletes' arousal levels

We talk with a lot of coaches about inconsistency. In fact, I’d go so far to say this is the #1 issue that we’ve seen this year. As an athlete, I remember being frustrated with my team’s and my own inconsistency. We’d often ask ourselves:

  • Why would we play great one half and poorly the next?
  • Why did I score 30 points one game and 10 the next?
  • Why was I ready for the big game and lackluster for a minor game?

While the competition was part of it, I’ve realized that a big part of the problem was arousal management. We never effectively nor proactively managed our arousal level.

What is arousal?

Your “Arousal Level” is your state of readiness and refers to your physical, emotional and mental state. In simple terms, it is a measure of your internal energy level (also known as butterflies). It includes psychological (anger, confidence, fear, nervousness, aggression, etc.) and physiological (pulse, breathing, temperature, etc.) elements. The...

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