On the Leadership under Fire podcast, Ben Oliva shares his journey in becoming a performance coach, some of the scientifically-proven mental skills he employs with athletes, firefighters, and executives, and his love for both Wedding Crashers & Good Will Hunting. The original podcast recording can be found here.
Performance coach Ben Oliva underscores how mental skills coaches only need one coaching toolkit to work with everyone from New York City firefighters, youth softball players, professional musicians, and even writers with a podcast. The original recording of this episode – The Coach In Your Head – can be found here.
Always be Learning Regardless of where you are in the journey towards performance excellence, you must approach every day with an emphasis on the process of learning and improvement, instead of outcomes and results. This is the foundation of consistently performing at your best. Mastery is a moving target and you must actively maintain your … Continued
In sport psychology, emotions can be understood as different forms of energy. Learning to regulate and channel that energy effectively is one of the five core mental skills of high performance. Mental performance is optimized within an ideal energy zone, unique to each person. Too little energy, and performance will suffer due to boredom and … Continued
Most articles and blogs about running your best race give similar advice: Make sure to get there early, dont go out too fast, carbo-load, drink lots of water, get enough sleep, taper your training, lube up your nipples and thighs, etc. And if your goal is simply to enjoy the race and the atmosphere, then … Continued
Meditation improves self-awareness, concentration, and self-control. Building these skills will help with performance consistency, particularly in extremely high pressure situations like the ones faced by first responders. When the pressure is on, or when you experience a threatening situation, you instinctively experience a stress response that prompts automatic reactions which tend to decrease your level … Continued
Inarguably, failure is a major part of playing sports. In baseball, failing to get a hit 7 out of every 10 times is all-star caliber. In basketball, even the greatest shooters fail to make 6 out of every 10 three-point shots. For that reason, one of the most important mental techniques to develop as an … Continued
During a recent mental performance workshop with a group of leaders in the FDNY, a critical discussion surfaced about teaching the mental skill of imagery to firefighters as part of the Leadership Under Fire program that the FDNY is implementing. As the discussion progressed, one of the experienced firefighters in the room stated, “We already … Continued
While every runner is different, some aspects of mental conditioning are the same regardless of the individual. At SportStrata, we call these fundamental ideas and attitudes our performance pillars: Enjoyment, Objective Optimism, Present and Future Orientation, and Process Focus. We teach specific mental skills like self-talk and visualization with the understanding that they are in … Continued