Kunashni Parikh

Clinical and Sport Psychologist


What is Sport Psychology? Understanding the Niche

Sport Psychology with Kunashni Parikh

Importance of Sport Psychology

Article Complied by: - Bhargavi Mahesh Ojale, S.Y.B.A., D. G. Ruparel College, Mumbai

      The field of Sport Psychology is a specialization of Psychology that seeks to understand the psychological or mental factors that affect performance in sport, physical activity, and exercise and apply these to enhance individual and team performance. One of the major ways Sport Psychology helps you is through stress reduction in learning and performance. While some stress is inevitable and natural, levels of stress that are excessive damage performance. Sport Psychology helps you manage stress and turn it into success. It deals with increasing performance by managing emotions and minimizing the psychological effects of injury and poor performance. It studies the role of motivation in sport, social aspects of sport and physiological issues like importance of training on muscle development, the coordination between eye and hand, the muscular coordination in track and field, swimming and gymnastics. Some of the most important skills taught are goal setting, relaxation, visualization, self-talk, awareness and control, concentration, confidence, and using pre-performance rituals.

Sport Psychology with Kunashni Parikh

Sport Psychology helps you devise a customized mental readiness process that helps you transition from your normal work, school or social worlds into the special world of competition. Sports psychologist is a person uses various methods to help a sportsperson overcome their anxiety, stress, emotional management, and other mental factors. This eventually helps the person to grow their game and become a successful sportsperson in the future.

The following points state the Importance of Sports Psychology: -

1. Enhancement of Physiological Capacities:

Sports psychology plays a very unique role in the enhancement of physiological capacities such as strength, speed and flexibility etc., Motivation plays a major role in the enhancement of physical capacity of sport persons. It is well-known as well as an established fact that psychological capacities or powers can increase physiological capacities of individuals.

2. Preparing Athletes Psychologically for Competitions:

Sports psychology also plays its role in preparation of athletes psychologically for competitions. In fact, it has become a trend to give psychological tips to athletes or team players before and after the competitions. That is why, sports psychologists’ services are required with a national level and international level terms. They create the will ‘to win’ in the players

Sport Psychology with Kunashni Parikh - Tennis

3. Role in the Emotional Problems of Sports Persons:

    Stress, tension and anxiety are natural during practice period and competitions or tournaments. There may be some other emotional problems such as depression, frustration, or guilt. The knowledge of sports psychology may be helpful in such situations. Techniques of relaxation and concentration for stress management can be applied on sportspersons who are under such problems.

4. Recovering from Injury:

Injured athletes commonly experience at least three emotional responses: isolation, frustration and disturbances of mood. The Sports Psychologist in consultation with the medical team must make ready the injured athlete to participate in sports and games.

Summary of the Niche

      In summary, Sport psychologists work with professional athletes and coaches to improve performance and increase motivation. Other professionals utilize exercise and sport to enhance people’s lives and well-being throughout the entire lifespan. Professional sport psychologists often help athletes cope with the intense pressure that comes from competition and overcome problems with focus and motivation. They also work with athletes to improve performance and recover from injuries. They also help regular people learn how to enjoy sport and learn to stick to an exercise program.

      Thus, the field of Sport Psychology, helps one imbibe great values, discipline, and teaches important skills like goal setting, relaxation, visualization, self-talk, awareness and control, concentration, confidence, and the use of pre-performance ritual to enhance an athlete’s performance.


References: –

  1. Importance of sports psychology in physical education and sports – www.sportsjournal.in
  2. Sports Psychology – R. B. Raw
Thank you to the guest author, Bhargavi Ojale, S.Y.B.A., D.G. Ruparel College, Mumbai, for contributing this blog piece.


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