Mental Skills for getting in the zone
In the space between easy and impossible there’s a magical, perfect level of challenge. Some people call it flow or focus; we call it The Zone. The Zone is easy to experience but hard to understand rationally. It happens when we’re fully present and when we’re using every ounce of our skill to complete the task at hand.
Learning to find The Zone isn’t like practicing a new move or perfecting a play. A lot of it is subconscious. Some of it is social and emotional. It takes mental preparation and a deep appreciation for the value of your sport. And it transforms how you play.
This is something every athlete already knows—the feeling of being completely, utterly absorbed by the game, where you’re acting on pure instinct. Our Deep Dive into focused attention and finding The Zone is designed to help parents and coaches support student-athletes as they work to elevate their play. Download now:
Top Mental Barriers: Focused Attention
WHAT IT IS
The Zone isn’t just about attention, but that’s the biggest part of it. Different experts talk about it differently: mindfulness, flow, a higher state of performance. It’s a state of mind where you’re focused completely on what’s around you, thinking with your body and seeing everything in terms of what your next move needs to be.
Getting there takes work. Not in the moment, but in preparation: during practice, during downtime, even outside of athletics entirely. It’s about awareness, how you think about competition, and the tools you have available to prepare mentally for a game.
Why it Matters for Athletic Performance
This part’s easy. Being in The Zone is, very simply, the only way to play your absolute best. Outside The Zone you’ll find distraction, nerves, anger, exhaustion, and self-doubt: the mental barriers that block athletes from greatness. Inside it there’s nothing but the game.
How to Improve
Our Deep Dive gets into the science behind focused attention, flow, and optimal challenge. We explain how those key concepts are related to self-confidence, motivation, and the other topics we discuss here at CMP. Support yourself and your student-athletes by downloading now:
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