Mental Imagery and Its Impact on Athletic Performance Essay examples

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Mental Imagery and Its Impact on Athletic Performance

Jim just sat there before his match. Everyone else was running and warming up, but Jim just sat there. When the dual started, Jim went out on the mat and pinned his opponent, after showing excellent technique. The rest of the team lost. They didn't understand it; they would work out before the dual and couldn't win, but all Jim did was sit there and he won while showing excellent skill. Later they found out that Jim was using a technique of mental imagery, and he wasn't just sitting there. Many people have wondered about this way to train for sports. Mental imagery is "a cognitive psychological skill in which the athlete uses all senses to create a mental experience of athletic
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A clinical research assistant in sports psychology from the United States says, "Elite athletes do this naturally and reinforce it daily until it becomes second nature." Professional bodybuilders have used mental imagery long before the others. Body builder Arnold Schwarzenegger said that when he was 15 he imagined that he would win the Mr. Universe title (Schlosberg).

Mental imagery does not take the place of the physical training, but it just adds to it to make improvements. When a person pictures a positive outcome, they use more of their physical strength. Even though a person's muscles are fatigued and tired a person can use mental imagery to picture themselves doing a picture perfect lift when lifting more weight, which will increase their maximum potential (Schlosberg). According to the article, Mental Preparation and Training (2004) practice is practice, whether it is mental or physical, but J. King (2002) says, "Only perfect practice makes perfect."

There are many reasons why mental imagery works. Mental imagery can help a person learn faster, and it may even prevent an injury. This applies to weight training in specific. A person may become fatigued and their form goes down hill, but if they use mental imagery they picture each lift perfect so later the form is correct when the lift is actually executed. The task is focused on more if a person uses mental imagery.

Another way that mental imagery works is because it boosts a person's