Sports Hypnosis can;
There is a long history of hypnosis in sport proving how athletic performance is increased dramatically in many areas; style correction, increases in endurance, speed and strength enhancements are particularly effective.
Having won back the 'ashes' from Australia after over twenty years it is interesting that many English Cricketers have used Hypnosis. 2009 Twenty20 Cricket cup winners Pakistan had been hypnotised to 'bring back' the cup and to forget past failures. Previous to this, in a tour of Australia, England cricket captain Mike Brearley consulted a Sports Hypnotherapist to improve his game.
Most Champions use some form of hypnosis whether it's visualisation or affirmation and many seek the help of a professional hypnotist or sports psychologist to assist in their mental training.
Sports Hypnotists differ from Psychologists in that they work directly with the Subconscious part of the brain the part that controls our behaviours, so change with hypnosis is often rapid.
The use of hypnosis in sports has been around for hundreds of years. There is a lot of research in this area.
In the 1956 Melbourne Olympics, the Russian Olympic team took no less than 11 hypnotists to develop mental clarity and help the athletes with visualisation. In addition, out of 20 Australian swimmers named in one Olympic team 12 had been using Les Cunningham’s tapes for two months previously. – ‘Hypnosport’ by Les Cunningham. Also in 2009 British Shot Put champion and Olympian Alison Rodger used hypnosis to focus deeply on where she wanted to go in her sport. In the same year, Football was also touched by the hypnosis bug with Ipswich Town and Swindon Town enjoying successes following sessions utilising football hypnosis with a sports therapist.
In The Beijing 2008 Olympics USA Olympic Skeet Gold Medalists worked with a hypnotist.
Boxing hypnosis has been used by many Champions throughout the years. In 1996 Steve Collins beat Chris Eubank for the World Boxing Organisations Super-middleweight title. Much of his sports success being attributed to the focusing of attention created by hypnosis administered by Dr Tony Quinn, himself a former Champion bodybuilder. Collins was programmed to deliver two punches to Eubank’s one. In the fight Eubank threw 300 punches, Collins threw over 600.
Nigel Benn, WBC Super Middleweight Champion and Frank Bruno, WBC Heavyweight Champion both used Sports hypnosis for Boxing performance enhancement. Previous to this (in 1959) Swedish boxer Ingmar Johannson used Hypnosis to take the heavyweight boxing title from Floyd Patterson, he floored Patterson seven times in the third round before knocking him out. In 1973 Ken Norton used hypnosis to defeat Muhammed Ali. Ali then also began using hypnosis.
Athlete Iwan Thomas and Golfers Ian Woosnam and Tiger Woods were hypnotised. Indian golfer, Gaganjeet Bhullar qualified for the 2009 British Open by using Golf Hypnosis administrated by a hypnotherapist to program a winning mindset.
Sports Hypnosis Today. A lot of the most effective techniques (such as imagery) used in Sports Psychology are themselves forms of hypnosis. Psychological developments such as 'active alert hypnosis' have been used by Hypnotherapists for decades, particularly in shooting sports such as in Archery Hypnosis and even Clay Pigeon Shooting.
A growing number of Sports Psychologists are beginning to realise that Sports Hypnosis is far more effective at getting quick results than Sports Psychology ever was. In fact, a lot of the most effective techniques (such as visualisation) used in Sports psychology are themselves in fact forms of hypnosis, even though many Psychologists are blissfully unaware of this.
Sports Hypnosis differs from Sports Psychology in various ways but particularly in that hypnosis works directly with the Subconscious part of the brain the part that controls our behaviours, so change with hypnosis is often rapid. This is of great interest to sports people who need to achieve 'the zone' when performing or if their sports behaviour is largely unconscious in nature - this is true for any sport that conscious regulation hinders performance - for instance, if speed is necessary.
Hypnosis is based in the Subconscious mind, the non-critical part of the psyche. There is little need for conscious acceptance, other than the desire to be helped.
The traits you need mentally, emotionally and physically for success you already possess within. With the assistance of hypnosis you can gain access to these abilities and experience the reality of your potential. You are capable of being the athlete you wish to be.
One of Hypnosis's main benefits over some other forms of Psychology is its ability in accessing unconscious behaviours rapidly.
It's often easy for an athlete to be aware of their 'problem' but solving it is another matter when they retain unconscious motivations to keep it alive.
• Increase an athlete’s speed by slowing down their perception of time, hence they will run faster, punch quicker etc.
• Develop a new technique through in-trance visualisation without the intervention of gravity. Used for sports where gravity prevents an athlete from practicing techniques in slow motion (i.e. Diving, Gymnastics.)
• Install the self-image of an athlete: Change the view of the ‘under dog’ or ‘couch potato’ to that of a sports person.
• Install traits of a professional athlete.
• Programme endurance: The ‘will’ always breaks before the muscle unless you are specifically conditioned for endurance.
• Remove hesitations/freezing/choking during competition.
• Learn to enjoy the ‘pain’ of sports.
• Revisit a previous good performance and set up anchors to trigger that resourceful state again when required.
• Increase strength: Weightlifting increased bench press by 30% through hypnosis.
• Good nutrition instillation: Change in fitness attitudes and behaviours. Stop viewing food as a source of taste pleasure to viewing food as a source of fuel for the body. (as athletes do)
• Remove mental obstacles to success: Fear of Success or the repercussions that it may bring (i.e. Pressure to keep performing at a high level.)
• Install complex behaviours unconsciously: Reduces over consciousness of complex movements which can have an adverse effect on sporting abilities.
Sports Psychology and Sports Hypnosis are impossible to separate as they both work with behaviour and the unconscious mind to varying degrees. Clearly, it depends to some extent who you consult for help as to the effectiveness of Sports Psychology or Sports Hypnosis.
How does Sports Hypnosis work?
Human brainwaves are divided into four levels of activity often referred to as cycle-per-second activity. These are named:
- Beta: Your normal consciousness.
- Alpha: Falling asleep/Awaking/Dream state.
- Theta: Deeper Sleep.
- Delta: Full sleep to deepest sleep.
Alpha, Theta and Delta are all considered altered states of consciousness or various levels of trance/hypnosis. When you enter an 'altered state' your brainwaves alter, hypnosis has the effect of slowing the brainwaves and giving us access to the unconscious mind where our behaviours are based.
Because of the heightened suggestibility levels in the alpha and theta levels, positive programming is extremely effective.
What is the technology behind Steve's Recordings?
Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP);
A set of tools that which takes hypnosis to an even greater level of effectiveness and enables one to organise information and perceptions in ways that allow them to achieve results that were once inconceivable. Based on the perception that all behaviour has a structure and that structure can be re-programmed.
One of the reasons why it can be so easy to make changes with NLP, is that the pleasure derived from the unwanted habit can be transferred to a desirable or perhaps more healthy habit of your choice (e.g. drinking more water or relaxation).
How can Hypnotherapy help you?
Hypnotherapy can help one to 'stop doing something they do not wish to do', or to 'start doing something one does wish to do'.
Often used for those people who feel they have behaviours or thoughts that are 'inside themselves' but 'outside of their control'.
The structure of Steve's Recordings;
Each sports hypnosis recording begins by relaxing your body one part at a time whilst leaving your mind awake and alert. This cuts out negative self-talk and aids in releasing 'happy hormones' from the brain thus increasing one's sense of well being.
Stage two concentrates upon removing mental barriers to development which are often the reason behind long and short-term 'sticking points'. These trapped mental barriers prevent the adult from developing performance and even to build particular muscle groups. If for example, you still consider yourself partly childlike in some attitudes perhaps your unconscious mind is 'clinging' to an underdeveloped Chest of childlike proportions!
The third stage of these recordings involve direct in-trance Visualisation (which can aid in the release of Testosterone in the body) focusing the mind's energies towards building the physical and mental attitudes that you desire. Through unconscious visualisation every cell of the body is communicated too, showing your mind and body how you wish to look and feel once your goals have been achieved. You clearly see and thus become the person you wish to be.
The final stage of these recordings saturates your mind with positive hypnotic commands which direct specific mind and body areas to develop. This stage can be used on its own during training sessions to focus the mind on the job at hand and to intensify workouts.