Are You a Self-Critical Figure Skater?
In figure skating, your rival and your biggest adversary present two separate challenges…
Your rival may be a skater you have grown up with or someone who beat you the previous year… Or a skater with a higher rank. Your biggest adversary is not another person, it’s YOU!
An adversary is often referred to as an enemy who continuously and relentlessly opposes you.
Think of a time when you were your own worst enemy… Did you verbally berate yourself after a fall? Did you mentally give up before you even started your program? Did you allow yourself to be intimidated by other skaters?
Ashley Wagner is an accomplished U.S. figure skater who won a silver medal at the 2016 World Championships and has three U.S. National titles.
Despite all her accomplishments, Wagner still battles that internal adversary at times. Wagner took a two-month sabbatical after her last Grand Prix event in China. Wagner under-rotated jumps and battled doubts en route to finishing outside the top five for the first time in her 25 Grand Prix starts dating to 2007. Wagner has admitted that she can sabotage her performance by being too hard on herself.
Heading into her 10th senior U.S. Championships, Wagner was seeking to rebound and squelch that inner critic.
WAGNER: “The door is wide open for everyone [at the 2017 U.S. Championships]. I think that there is no obvious or clear front-runner… I’m competing against myself, because I’m usually my own worst enemy at nationals. If I think about everybody else, that’s not going to help me.”
Wagner’s goal was to quiet her inner critic at the U.S. Championships. By staying positive, Wagner was able to perform strong in the free skate program, taking second place and putting herself in position to make the U.S. World Championship team.
7 Warning Signs that You are Your Own Worst Enemy
- You have difficulty giving yourself credit for your successes.
- You disqualify your strengths.
- You create super high expectations of yourself and wonder why you always fail.
- You compare yourself and your accomplishments to other skaters.
- You are overly critical of most things you do.
- You over-analyze your performance and beat yourself up over every past mistake or missed opportunity.
- You fear you will fall or make mistakes.
Why be so self-critical?
You are already facing strong competition and tough challenges, there is no need to make it harder.
Besides, your thoughts about yourself are usually distorted. You are too close to yourself to see things as they truly are and just because you think a thought doesn’t make it fact.
You can just as easily grab a hold of thoughts that support your skills, talents and accomplishments. You can choose to be your biggest fan rather than your worst enemy… IT’S A CHOICE!
A Strategy For Overcoming Your Inner Critic
First, you need to fact-check your thoughts. Ask other people for their feedback regarding your skills and performance.
Ask yourself, “Is there a chance that I’m too hard on myself?”
If so, make a conscious choice to replace the inner critic.
Start with one positive self-statement, “I have trained hard and am primed for success.”
Ask yourself: How often do I criticize myself when skating? Being more aware if the first step to changing this behavior.
Discover Mental Strategies For Peak Performance!
You (or your athlete) might be the most skilled figure skater and train harder or longer than anyone else, but if you can’t take your practice performance to competition, you simply will not reach your true potential in figure skating.
Learn the top 8 mental game lessons to improve focus, composure, and confidence!
Discover proven mental game secrets to unstoppable confidence in practice and competition.
Figure Skaters: Get the mental edge by learning how to take control of your confidence, mentally prepare for competition, and perform with composure under pressure.
Coaches: Boost your figure skater’s confidence using simple, proven mental strategies.
Parents: Help boost your athlete’s performance. Don’t let their mind hold them back any longer.
Mental Coaches: Learn a proven system for helping your athletes boost mental toughness.
What are mental coaching customers saying?
“It was amazing!!! Before the show, I really felt like I was becoming the part. I was oddly calm, which concerned me because I thought my nerves might kick in on stage! But, they didn’t! I stayed focused in each moment, and remained calm, and actually did the difficult tricks better than I ever have! My coaches were all so proud of me and the one who I know the best was marveling at my calm, poised manner throughout the ballet. They said it seemed like I was doing it for the 15th time, I looked so comfortable. This is the result of my work with you! You gave me the tools to tackle this huge mountain of a role, step by step! I am beyond happy!”
~Professional Ballerina, Student of Dr. Cohn in 2013
Improve Mental Toughness in Figure Skating
Download our figure skating mental training audio program: 5 Tips to Help Perfectionist Figure Skaters
- The top challenges for perfectionist figure skaters
- Why perfectionist skaters under perform in competition
- 5 tips to help figure skaters manage perfectionism
Download our free figure skating mental training audio program: 5 Tips to Help Perfectionist Figure Skaters
Boost Your Self-Confidence And Focus With Expert Mental Game Coaching!
Master mental game coach Dr. Patrick Cohn can help you overcome your mental game issues with personal coaching.
You can work with Dr. Patrick Cohn himself in Orlando, Florida or via Skype, FaceTime, or telephone. Call us toll free at 888-742-7225 or contact us for more information about the different coaching programs we offer!
What are our mental coaching students saying?
“Ashley wanted me to let you know that she placed very well at her competition this past weekend, thanks to you! She won the short, won the long, and had her personal best. She now looks at her competitions like ice shows and has fun. It is really nice to see her thoroughly enjoying the skate. She is very focused and very confident. We definitely attribute this to you.”
~Brenda Glassco, Skating Parent