Thursday, December 4, 2008

Playing With Poise

Playing with poise is an underrated facet of the game. The ability to play under control with a clear head allows the player to perform to the best of their ability. If a player gets rattled by another play or just the situation itself then the player's performance will more than likely drop dramatically. Thinking about failure is a surefire way to fail. The champions think about winning, about hitting the game winner, about stopping their man from hitting the final shot...positive things.

I firmly believe in telling yourself you will make the free-throw instead of saying I can't miss this free-throw. The littlest things matter in crunch time. Being positive, focusing on the moment, and doing all the small things right lead to a good outcome.

Some people are born with poise. They don't get rattled under pressure. They know to slow down in crucial times, they don't speed up. I think it can be taught in many ways though. Teaching to block out distractions, block out thoughts of failure or even success in some cases. One can force themselves to relax by deep breathes and focusing on the task at hand. Do rights right and good things will happen, sometimes the rest is out of your hands anyway.

Slow down under pressure!