There is an abundant amount of information floating around the internet with regards to proper training, proper nutrition, proper mental preparation, and proper technique for grapplers. In fact, there’s so much out there, it becomes a much bigger job to sift through the good and bad and extract what you need as an individual than it should be. Your job, as an athlete, is to do the damn thing.
Do the thing and you shall have the power” – Ralph Waldo Emerson.
Emerson was a 19th century American poet (among other things), but he may as well have been a sports psychologist with a mindset like that. All of the information athletes are perpetually bombarded with is meant to help them, though it seems to just distract defer focus to ideas and concepts they don’t need to be scrutinizing. Ultimately, an athlete (and grapplers in particular) need to shut their minds down and be an absolute animal to get the job done on the mats. In order to be successful, athletes must simplify and execute.
Simplify and Execute
There are more clinical terms for this concept found in sports psychology. “Attentional Focusing” for example, is “the ability to focus attention on cues in the environment that are relevant to the task in hand.” In short, the capability of an athlete to focus on task-relevant cues in order to achieve what they need to. The ability to simplify and execute. The ability to do the thing.
James Kerr in his bestseller “Legacy” puts it this way:
Under pressure, your attention is either diverted or on track. If you’re diverted, you have a negative emotional response and unhelpful behavior…if your attention is on track, you have situational awareness and you execute accurately. You are clear, you adapt, and you overcome.”
With so much information constantly at our fingertips, it becomes tough to sift through and determine what is right for you. That’s why it’s important to surround yourself with people you trust to advise you for your particular athletic goals, and reliable resources (like FUJI Fit) to direct you appropriately. And it’s important to do this in preparation for events, not the day of.
Ultimately, when you hit the mats, all the thinking should’ve already be done. The ability of you as an athlete to focus on the task at hand, to simplify and execute, will be the difference in success and failure the vast majority of the time. The training, the eating, the mental preparation, and the technical components of you as a grappler need to be the object of your attention leading into a competition, once you’re on the mats, your attention should be on one thing: execution.