May 30, 2012

That doesn’t really matter, right?

I was asked by my cousin not too long ago (who just got bit by the MMA bug) all sorts of questions, one of which was how do I prepare myself for a match.

I have a mental imagery system that I use to get myself prepared for a match. It allows me to relax when I need to, and get psyched just in the right time.

It is simple really – I use colors. I focus on a color and allow it to drive my emotions. Here are some examples:

Blue – A rolling ocean, relaxing, peaceful. I can hear the waves sloshing around and the occasional chirp from a bird. Clear blue skies, just a beautiful day. I use this imagery to put deeply relax and sleep during a long wait.

People often are over-psyched and let their nerves drain them before the competition even begins. By focusing on the Blue image, I can sleep and relax easily and save my energy.

Green – A field of vibrant green grass. The sound of summer fills the air, and I rest underneath a large tree, taking comfort in the shade. I use green to relax but still stay awake. Whether I’m studying matches going on, eating, or just walking around the event, I stay relaxed with green.

A beginner mistake I see happen is when competitors watch their team mates compete. When you see other people compete that are close to your heart, you are invested in the outcome of their match. Your emotions raise and fall is the action moves – putting your emotions on a roller coaster.

I don’t recommend my competitors to coach or even watch other team mates. We have designated coaches to take care of coaching so that our competitors can focus on competing.

Yellow – I feel a fire burning from within, that is consuming everything in my mind. The fire burns through any distracting thoughts that try to enter my mind – allowing me to be free of thought.  I use yellow to get myself warmed up. I’m not in full blown competition mode yet – this is just to get myself moving and getting ready for combat.

Warming up is important. You want to be breaking a good sweat before getting on the mats, and you should be very loose and flexible. I see people enter their match cold, and they are going through the warm up during their match.

Red – The fire has now intensified and raging through my mind. I see blood and now I’m getting psyched. This is my color for battle. I enter this color just upon entering the cage or stepping on the mats. Seeing this gives me a rush and I am fully invested in the match now. There is nothing else on my mind but giving my all in battle.

Getting psyched in just the right moment is critical. Too early, and you fatigue yourself. Too late, and well, it is too late – LOL!

Using Red, I can pump myself in the perfect moment – allowing myself to peak and perform to the best of my abilities.

If you are not using a mental device to focus your energies, do this and see how it works for you.

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To become the best, we must continuously test ourselves. We measure our performance, evaluate our faults, accept criticism and then work on improving ourselves before starting all over again.

I live by this principle, and I need your help! I wish to be the best instructor I can be, but I need feedback from you to know if I am doing a good job. Let me know if you liked or disliked what you saw in the video by entering a comment below. If you liked it, share it with your friends by clicking the share buttons at the top of the page.

What did you think?

  • Never heard about this style of mental prep. I can see how it would work well. Thanks!

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