Monday, December 18, 2017

Visualization puts you in the moment- anytime, anywhere

November 16, 2012 by  
Filed under In The News

As a young athlete I always heard my coaches talk  about visualization. Are you visualizing yourself  landing that jump Nicolette? Or have you pictured  what it will feel like to pass that senior freestyle  test? While athletes can be trained to utilize  specific visualization techniques, the reality is that  we visualize all the time. We don’t even realize we’re doing it.

Ever pictured yourself modeling a sweater you had  your eye on? What about going over every detail of  a big event like your wedding constantly until -poof- you just attended your very own dream wedding? When we daydream we’re visualizing what we want to come into our lives.

When we daydream we’re messing with some powerful stuff!  Keep those daydreams as positive as possible. That way your positive thoughts will attract positive circumstances into your life.

About two months ago I decided to try visualizing everyday. Not just let my mind wander, but put intention behind exactly what I was trying to picture. I pictured skating the program of my life. I picture skating that program at least two or three times a day. Visualizing helped me understand how I feel as I prepare to skate a program, how I feel during a program, and how I feel once the routine is complete.

Last week I took a student to competition. I was there as her coach to support her (she did well by the way), and usually being in a competitive or show like atmosphere with a student doesn’t phase me much.

This time, however, as soon as I entered the rink, my body  went into competition mode. All of the feelings I felt while visualizing my performance, the excitement and anticipation, came flooding into my consciousness. I became energized and was ready to step on the ice and compete. I was in the “zone”.

Now I haven’t competed in a few years. I’m not used to getting ready for competition. Simply by visualizing myself having a great skate and competition experience I put myself emotionally, physically, and energetically in a place to be able to deliver a great performance. I have no doubts that I or anyone else would be able to pull off a great routine using this technique.

Athletes can set time aside to visualize on a daily basis. There are lots of visualization techniques to try. I personally like to take a few calming breaths and start by visioning that I already had a successful performance. I start in my ending position and take in how I feel, knowing that I have just had a great skate. Then I backtrack and visualize getting ready to perform.  Then actually go through the performance itself. Finally, I envision the end result again(the result I can control, which is how I feel after I skate). I take a few more relaxing breaths and open my eyes.

If visualization still seems tricky to you, try this.

1.) Picture yourself holding a lemon. Feel its shape, smell its lemony smell, know how heavy it is.

2.) Pretend to eat the lemon. Slice it open and notice what happens to the juice inside. Put the lemon to your lips and breathe in its smell. Bite into the lemon and taste its sourness.Take your time to experience everything you can while eating the lemon.

3.) Notice that you are already salivating. Just thinking about the experience of eating a lemon causes your body to respond as if you were actually engaged in that activity.

That’s how powerful visualization can be. your body responds to what your mind perceives as real. It’s just a matter of time before that vision comes true.

-Nicolette House

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