A Winning Mindset – By Maddy Lavoie
In this past week, I have had the opportunity to learn what it means to truly have a winning mindset. In athletics of all kinds, coaches push their athletes in practices to help them reach their full athletic potential. But what good does that do if athletes do not have a winning mindset? People often do not think of the mental aspect of sports, which I think is most important.Last week, I had my first dual meet of the 2019-2020 collegiate season. Delta State was competing against the University of Alabama, which is a very prestigiously-ranked division 1 team. The morning of the meet, some of my talented teammates were scared and already felt defeated before the meet started.
They didn’t understand the point of getting on the blocks and not winning. I think this is a common problem in swimmers when going into a competition. They are prepared to lose before they even get on the blocks. But one race is filled with a pool of talented swimmers who have trained for this moment to compete. It is the swimmers who get the blocks and say “I’m going to win” and compete with the ones in the lanes beside them that achieve the best results. If you get on the blocks already prepared to lose, you already lost the race. I think many talented athletes do not reach their full potential because they don’t have a winning mindset when it comes time to go to a competition. This means all of their hard work training is not shown in the race. Your mindset ultimately determines your result, whether in practice or in a race. Belief about what you can accomplish is essential to any possibility of achieving something.
Over the past few weeks, I have been working on my winning mindset. I am trying to improve as an athlete both physically and mentally. The hard work I have put in over summer and the beginning of the collegiate season have paid off already. I was able to capture 3 wins against Alabama in the 100 and 200 breaststroke and the 200 IM. I think this is proof that having a winning mindset can separate you from other swimmers. This mindset is crucial to all athletes who want to reach their full potential and perform the best of their abilities at competition.