December 2017, RSR hosted 9 athletes from around the country who wanted to focus on erg efficiency, erg strategy and start to work on their mental fitness. After 8 hours of training and seminars on nutrition, 2K Race Plans, bravery and cognitive skills the girls all felt more prepared and less performance anxiety. We also had the privilege of hearing from two great guest speakers: Coach Linda Muri former World Champion, Harvard lightweight men's coach and the coach of multiple National Team and U23 boats, along with CrossFit Games athletes, Whitney Gelin. Both athletes were open, vulnerable and real talking about their fear, how they handled that fear and what advice they have for balancing training and competition with a fulfilling life.
The athletes self-reported the following after the 2K Clinic:
- 100% reported being very/extremely satisfied with the Clinic
- 89% strongly feel more confident taking on challenges
- 89% strongly feel braver
- 89% strongly believe they now have tools to better manage performance anxiety
- 89% strongly feel more confident regarding their next 2K test.
Additionally- we experienced some great developments comparing Pre-Clinic Data (PRE) to Post-Clinic Data (POST):
- PRE: 78% said they would be "happier" with a faster erg time. There were NO athlete who selected "NO" when asked this question- meaning they all felt their erg time was an influence on their happiness.
- POST: 33% said they would be happier with a faster erg time and 11% said NO a faster erg time would not make them "happier"
- Why is this important? Because at RSR we explain that what makes them HAPPY is actually understanding that they gave their best effort (and did the necessary preparation to get there) - it's not the TIME but the effort and reaching full potential in that moment.
- PRE: 4 athletes directly tied their personal identity to their race results and 3 athletes said NO they do not tie race results to their personal identity.
- POST: Only 1 athlete still tied her personal identity to race results; 6 athletes now reported that their personal identity is NOT a function of race results.
- This is CRITICAL - we want the athletes to know they are loved, have self worth and add tremendous value to the world and other people REGARDLESS of their performance. The PERFORMER does not equal PERFORMANCE.
- PRE: 56% of athlete reported they did not see how race results are out of their control.
- POST: 100% of athletes reported they understand race results are out of their control.
- This is a HUGE ACCOMPLISHMENT in helping to reduce anxiety and improve performance - in rowing all you can control is how fast you go in your lane - there is no defense. So I teach athletes to only "worry" about what is directly under their control - and the "results" are only a function of how fast they go in their lane AND how fast their competitors go. Obviously, erg times are a bit different but this is how they should view on the water race results.
- PRE: Before the Clinic I asked the athletes how successful they felt they were in "quieting the negative voice" in their head. On a scale of 1-5 (5 being great): 1 athlete = 4 out of 5, 6 athletes = 3 out of 5, 1 athlete = 2 out of 5, 1 athlete = 1 out of 5.
- POST: 1 athlete reported 5 out of 5, 2 athletes = 4 out of 5, 5 athletes = 3 out of 5, 1 athlete = 2 out of 5 and ZERO athlete reported 1 out of 5.
- This is great - it is incredibly difficult to do this and they need to continue practicing this skill or it atrophies just like every other muscle in the body. Each girl left the Clinic with a rough/draft framework for starting to change the script in her head.
These are tremendous results and they should be very proud of the physical, mental and emotional effort they gave last week. It was a privilege to work with them and I look forward to coaching many more athletes in the future at a RSR 2K Clinic. And many thanks to Linda and Whitney for being tremendous role models and sharing your time with us!
Interested in bringing RSR to your team, school or club? Reach out to us HERE.