Pressure training in sport: Enhancing design and delivery of applied interventions
Billy Low (Heriot-Watt University)
Pressure training (PT) is an intervention that allows athletes to develop their ability to cope with pressure before they are in a critical situation in competition. In PT, coaches or sport psychologists systematically increase pressure during athletes’ training. Whereas sport psychology support often takes place in classrooms or offices, PT provides athletes with hands-on experience of pressure while training their sport. This talk will cover three studies that examined the impact of PT on performance and its delivery in applied sport settings. The first study was a meta-analysis of PT interventions, and results highlighted key areas for the subsequent research to address. Next, a qualitative study of sport psychologists and Olympians/Paralympians examined how to create pressure and deliver PT effectively. Key findings highlighted the importance collaboration with athletes and integration of PT into training sessions, and these processes may counter risks that added pressure could pose to athletes’ wellbeing. These findings were then applied to PT for a professional women’s basketball team. Results further elaborated on the nature of consequences that can be used to create pressure, and applied implications provide coaches and sport psychologists with guidance for integrating PT as a consistent part of training in sport.
In-person: Mary Burton G.13, Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh.