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Creating A Game Within A Game: Playoff Moments

"Ability is what you are capable of doing. Motivation determines what you do. Attitude determines how well you do it."

- Lou Holtz

Playoff Moments: Part 2

When athletes hear the word playoffs, it gets the mind racing. Thoughts include, every game is do or die, there is more meaning behind each moment, more people are coming to watch, and there is a lot of expectation!

This week we will dive into the characteristics that help athletes learn to perform in the playoff moments, be it playing toward a state or national championship, or the playoff rounds in a tournament.


Interest and Engagement

Research shows that because of technology, the average attention span has dropped from 12 seconds to 8 seconds. Goldfish have an attention span of 9 seconds. Therefore, people now have a shorter attention span than goldfish!



It should be because it’s a myth.


Attention span is about engagement and interest. If you are interested in something, chances are, you will pay more attention and be focused on the task at hand.

Drills in practice can, at times, get stale or seem boring. There are also competitions when you outmatch your opponent or are outmatched by your opponent. In these moments, it can be hard to motivate and stay focused.

Tips of the day 🎯


If you are going to fully engage in practice and competition, you need to hold yourself accountable.

As an athlete, remind yourself daily of your personal goals and the goals of the team. Think of what you want to accomplish each day so that you can get one step closer to achieving your personal and team goals.


There are moments that make it hard to fully focus in practices and competitions.

To find that interest, create a game within a game or personal challenges.

In practice, when you have to do a drill that you don’t like or find boring, create a challenge for yourself. For example, a swimmer could swim a set with her goggles filled with water. The reason being, if it happens in a race, she will be prepared and it won’t be a distraction.

The same can be done in competition. For example, a soccer player makes it a game within a game by battling for as many 50/50 balls in the match as he can. His challenge is to be aggressive and work hard. He keeps score of how many 50/50 balls he wins vs loses.

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