How to Be Mentally Prepared Before a Game

Mental preparation is one of the most important parts of an individual’s sports performance. Some players have all the skills in the world, but if they are not mentally prepared they would not be able to implement their skills through the duration of "game time". One of the best ways to be mentally prepared is to practice visualization of the game.


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    Start early. Preparing for a game starts the night before.
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    Visualize the game and then replay it over in your head. Visualize yourself hitting that home-run, scoring a perfect goal, saving a penalty or putting in a three pointer, or pitching that no-hitter. Imagine yourself spiking that volleyball or doing the perfect flip turn. See yourself dribbling the ball and swishing a three-pointer, getting first in the race, scoring that touchdown, or making the huge hit.
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    Keep your mind at ease, and try not to let anyone upset you.
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    Keep calm and focused at all times. You can do this by actively recognising what your own part in the game is, and then trying to do your best at your own part. The result would come accordingly.
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    Talk to encouraging, positive people, not people that have negative attitudes.
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    Try not to focus on the game too much because you make mistakes and you tend to get upset and your level of play deteriorates. On your own level, you need to keep your calm and help your team recognize their strengths.
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    When you think about failure, you need to affirm to yourselves that bad things may happen. Do not resist the fear of failure by thinking about success, instead, tell yourselves that failure exists and surpass it, don't resist it.
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    Relax and have fun. It's almost impossible to do your best if you're extremely stressed about doing perfect. And it's no fun if you have the, "destroy the other team at all costs" attitude either. Remember how much you've practiced, and picture all that amounting to you doing great. However, don't get so relaxed and confident that you forget to try hard.


  • Listen to music that keeps you calm and soothes you, and then listen to music that will get you pumped for the game.
  • Stretching is a key part of a pre-game routine, so make sure you do plenty of stretches to avoid injury.
  • Make sure to get a good night sleep the night before and don't sleep in. It will make you tired. Don't wake up too early either.
  • Prepare yourself. Don't skip practices and then go into a game expecting to be the star player.
  • Find relaxing techniques that work for you in stressed situations.
  • Start a pre-game routine.
  • Identify what motivates you and keeps you focused.
  • When you are in the dressing room before the game take 30–40 minutes to just prepare yourself mentally by thinking over the game. Do not talk, just be in a room with complete silence. This way you make yourself go into the game with the right attitude.
  • Stretch and consider that it's not the end of the world if you loose- what's the worst that can happen?
  • Drink plenty of water!
  • Mental preparation is more important that physical preparation. Make sure you are focused.
  • Don't let a little mistake effect the rest of the game. Keep your head high and do your best!
  • Meditate the night and morning before. This helps calm your mind and concentrate when you are playing.


  • Do not do anything that you do not usually do for example, some people go and run before a game, or do sprints. But this might only make you more tired. You need to keep all your energy for the game.
  • When you wake up in the morning do not do anything that will affect your level of play.

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Categories: Individual Sports