Sports psychology is a relatively new field, but there are degree programs popping up all over regarding this career path. Sport psychology really encompasses two basic areas. The first is studying the psychological effect that participating in sports has on us. The second area, and the one that is most used as a career, is the study of how psychological and mental factors affect our performance in sports.

As you can imagine, sports psychologists are often employed by professional athletes and athletic teams to help them maximize their performance on the field, using psychological techniques. Sports psychologists help athletes and teams learn goal setting, relaxation, visualization, self talk, concentration, confidence, etc. along with their physical training to get the most out of each performance.

To be a sports psychologist, you must understand general psychology, but you must also have a good understanding of sports, training and fitness, and sports injury and medicine. There are some degree programs available for sports psychology.

If you’d like to learn more about the field before entering a degree program, check out these 10 open courseware classes that are relevant to the subject. All are free and they come from some of the best universities in the country.

  1. General Psychology: This course from UC Berkeley gives you the basics in psychology.
  2. Confronting Injuries: This class in sports medicine from Johns Hopkins explores injury control and prevention.
  3. Stress Management: This course from Weber State University explores stress management as it relates to human performance. It focuses on causes of stress, recognizing personal stressors and life changing management for stress control.
  4. Musculoskeletal Pathophysiology: This course from Tufts University focuses on disorders that affect the musculoskeletal system.
  5. The Chemistry of Sports: This course from MIT focuses on swimming, cycling and running, and introduces students to the chemistry of their biological systems.
  6. Sports Media and Culture: This course from Learning Space looks at the media coverage of sports. Learn how media coverage has impacted some of the greatest moments in sports and how media coverage in general can affect sports performance.
  7. Introduction to Cardiovascular Fitness: A healthy cardiovascular system is critical in all sports. This course from Wikiversity explores getting fit for a strong heart.
  8. Clinical Psychology: This course from Berkeley offers an introduction to clinical psychology concepts.
  9. Developmental Psychopathology: A general class in developmental psychology offered by the University of California at Berkeley.
  10. Nutritional Sciences and Toxicology: Nutrient Function and Metabolism: This course from Berkeley covers diet and nutrition, including required nutrients and their function in the diet and metabolism.

For More Information

Sports psychology is still relatively new as a career field, so it’s not as easy to find information as on some other fields. There are, however, some publications that can help you in addition to the open courseware classes listed here. Take a look at the following:

  1. The American Journal of Sports Psychology: This is a great resource for finding articles, info about sports, and even jobs in sports fields. It’s a resource you’ll use over and over again.
  2. Athletic Insight: This is a new online journal of sports psychology. You can read articles, find conferences to attend and keep up with all the news in the sports psychology arena from this site.
  3. The International Journal of Sports Psychology: This online journal publishes empirical and theoretical contributions in the human movement sciences from all over the world. You can find a lot of statistical and medical information related to sports medicine and sports psychology here.
  4. The American College of Sports Medicine’s Home Page: This is a great resource, focusing primarily on sports medicine. However, there are some great articles and resources related to sports psychology, too.
  5. The Journal of Applied Sports Psychology: This journal is a paper publication that is published four times a year. However, you can access back issues online, too.
  6. The Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology: This publication publishes research articles about the interaction between the mind and body in the psychology of exercise and sports. It is published bi-monthly. Many of the articles are available for free online, but you can get a full subscription with a fee.

When we come on to the discussion of sport being as an active and important way of surviving through, then it plays a very important role in remaining healthy and fit by avoiding overweight. A sport activity helps children in variety of manners and schemes and most importantly it helps in by improving physical fitness, by improving confidence through learning skills and success. Sports help children to have control over their impulses that is very imperative in sports as well as social relationships. Sports tell children to create and develop relationships and have lifetime interest in things and activities.

Sports help a child to decrease overweight and obesity and save them from many health issues so helping a child to develop health and sporting habits help him to avoid later health problems. It has been observed that children and young who enjoy sporting activities are less prone to anti social activities. In case, if a children has a disability or going through medical problem then there are many sport activities which they can indulge into or play on.

If children have a disability or ongoing medical problem there are many sports they can play. Discuss this with your child’s doctor and then find out what is available in your area. However, involving a kid into sport do also requires many recommendation and ideas like as if a children starts in competitive sport before they are emotionally or physically maturated so it is possible that they may face disappointment and stress and even may quit gaming altogether.

However, in this exercise parents do have great role to play as apart from parents rest they can have support from parents, coaches, drivers, umpires, fundraisers and cheerleaders to play on an active and important role in entire activities. Parents even can help children by many means and methods to get excited and play and enjoy sports themselves as child can watch his parents involved into the sporting activities and children even can join them. Parents can play with children and even can teach children to develop those sporting skills and to the best and improve their skill and can do the best thing as much as possible.

They can go along with there children at sport spot and even can encourage them in improving their skills  and doing as best as possible for them in encourage them to attempt and try on various sport activities and ideas. Parents can teach children what by any means could be good sportsmanship and in what manner they can react to good sports as well as poor one. They help children to learn rules of the game and tell them why they are too important to even rule of the game and always should avoid them from blaming children from mistakes.  More it is on the part of parents is that they should always show courtesy and consideration at sporting events and they even should not argue with umpire and other players. This stresses a kid too. Thus it is clear that sports are very necessary for children for physical as well as mental growth.

Sport psychology (or sports psychology) is the study of a person’s behavior in sport. This is also termed as specialization within the brain psychology and kinesiology that tends to understand psychological and mental factors that makes an impression over sports, physical activities and exercises that when combined improves the performance of the team. Sport psychology deals with managing emotions and minimizing the psychological effect of injury and performance during the game. Some of the important skills developed during the process of sport psychology are goal setting, relaxation, visualization, self-talk, awareness and control, concentration, confidence attribution training, etc.

The first sport psychologist known to be in history is Norman Triplett, a North American man from Asia, born in 1861. His first finding as a sport psychologist was the relation of the fact that cyclist ride faster in pairs instead of riding solo. The International Society of Sport Psychology (ISSP) was formed by Dr. Ferruccio Antonelli of Italy in 1965. In 1966, sport psychologists in Chicago formed the North American Society of Sport Psychology and Physical Activity (NASPSPA).

Since 1970’s, sport psychology has become part of the university syllabus. The Sports Psychology programs as a part of the kinesiology help students to learn how to develop positive attitudes in athletes using sport psychology and drugs. By the 1980 sport psychology became more research focused. Now on Sport psychologists deal with issues like performance enhancement, the psychological impact of exercise and over training as well as stress management. Also, sport psychologists have started considering exercises as a mean to provide a therapeutic addition to healthy mental adjustment.

And with advancement of sporting activities, sport psychologists also have started gaining recognition for their valuable contribution which they have made to in assisting athletes and coaches in improving performances during competitive situations as well as understanding how sports psychology contribute to the growth of a sport activity. Below is the list of most common words used in sports psychology.

  • Cohesion: This term refers to the extent to which a team or group share a sense of shared task or social bond.
  • Imagery: This term is referred to be as ‘imagined’ sensation, which is known to be as visualization.
  • Attention Focus: This is termed as mean to block everything out, especially, crowd for having attention while playing a game.
  • Motivation: This most needed word is consisted of several traits that together form a general orientation of a person towards achievement in sports. The research related to sport is known to be Motivation as known to be The Achievement Motivation Inventory (AMI) (Schuler, Thornton, Frintrup & Mueller-Hanson, 2003) which is a broad-spectrum assessment of achievement-motivation in business.
  • Internal Monologue: This is about having the positive thoughts on a competition by handling a running conversation in one’s mind and brain.
  • Criticism: A tenet of motivational theory that is necessary to improve performance.

Sports Psychology is the study of the evaluation of a person’s behavior in various sports activities. This particular specialization seeks the understanding of the mental factors that mainly affect a person’s performance or participation in sports activities. The study works on enhancing on the performance of individuals or teams in sports. It mostly deals with increasing the performance by managing one’s emotions and countering the psychological effects of poor performance, stagnation and injury.

Some of the skills that are taught in working on the sports performance include: relaxation, goal achievement or setting, visualization, relaxation, awareness, concentration, relaxation, attribution training, self talk, control and periodization. These sports psychologist theories can also be applied to various other physical activities like playing musical instruments, acting in a play and so on. There are certain colleges that offer the Sports Psychology Program online.

The Keiser University and Keiser Career College
The Keiser University and Career College is a well established educational system that is based at Florida. In fact, it is made up of a series of schools that are associated, hence one main online institution. This online school works hard in providing well trained professional adults that can serve the nation with integrity and dignity. The Sports Psychologist courses are fully provided within this online institution and students have been well trained into better people. This online school ensures that all the trainees have acquired the skills of their profession to-be so that they can be a reliable team of workers.

Liberty University
Liberty University is an online sports psychologist school based at Virginia. It is one of the largest and rapidly growing Christian universities within Virginia. It was established with a mission to ensure that it has trained young lives for Jesus Christ. Some of the Sports Psychologist Programs provided at Liberty University include: Counseling Psychology, General Political Science and Government, General Psychology, General Social Sciences, Peace Studies and Conflict Resolution, and most of all the Sports Psychology Course.

The Grand Canyon University
This particular University was originally founded in the year 1949. It first began as a simple teachers college then grew to big private University. It is private and non denominational Christian Institution. It provides quality training to the young trainees, molding them into better people in the society. Some of the Sports Psychologist Programs provide d include: Counseling, Sociology, General Psychology and International Relations.

Ashworth University
It is also a growing Sports Psychologist School that provides quality training. It is a greatly respected college and a global leader. It is an accredited educational institution that provides high quality education online. It is also known as a Career Development Institute since it works on shaping green lives into integral young professionals. Some of the programs on Sports Psychology provided include: General Psychology and Sports Psychology.

Ashford University Online
Ashford University is a well established institution that works on providing affordable, innovative and good quality education to young lives. It offers degree and Master Programs on the following Sports Psychologist Fields: American Government and Politics, General Political Science, General Psychology, Sociology, General Geography, and so on.