With the Olympics in full swing, have you ever thought about how athletes keep their composure? Many use sport psychologists to help them “keep their head in the game.” How effective is this treatment, though? The Swiss National Science Foundation is currently conducting an experience sampling study to evaluate the treatment.
The study examined two evidence-based sports psychology treatments: Psychological Skills Training (PST) and Mindfulness Intervention (MI) in elite and sub-elite athletes. Each group received four two-hour sport psychology sessions over the course of 5 weeks. Then, participants had their movement monitored using accelerometers during a series of games.
Look out for the official results of this ongoing trial. It will hopefully answer how will this year’s Olympians can best stay focused, mindful, and psychologically sound now and in future competition.
Röthlin, P., Birrer, D., Horvath, S., & grosse Holtforth, M. (2016). Psychological skills training and a mindfulness-based intervention to enhance functional athletic performance: design of a randomized controlled trial using ambulatory assessment. BMC Psychology, 4(1), 1.