Mental wellbeing in the modern world

25 — 06

Mental wellbeing is a hot topic during these uncertain times as people of all ages find themselves faced with new challenges during lockdown which test the mind in different ways to before. These challenges are hard for everyone from children to adults but can provide an opportunity for growth and innovation.

Over the last two months we have run online courses across movement, tactics and mindset with players of all ages and levels scattered across the world. With each session it is becoming easier to find the best ways to deliver and discuss each topic and also understand which tools are best to focus on. On each course the mindset shines through as the biggest opportunity to learn, develop and maximise the people involved no matter if we are improving footwork or developing a game plan. Our mental state dictates the potential to operate at the highest level and this is not something exclusive to the worlds best

During the recent course helping juniors deal with pressure at tournaments the sessions have provided and opportunity not only to learn new techniques and tools for better tournament performances but also a chance to learn how the mind and body responds to uncertainty and stress. As we have progressed thorough each week together it has been possible to dive into neuroplasticity, fight or flight response, body language and the effects of cortisol on the body and more. Understanding these biological and technical lessons brings value for these children far beyond the squash court.

This period of online delivery has taught many things but one part which stands out is that we can use this time to improve and develop many areas of ourselves which can help our squash but also help our whole attitude towards pressure and disruption including how to innovate during new circumstances, shift towards new attitudes which are growth focused and review old attitudes to improve them.

The other exiting part of all of this time is the power of community and communication to bring progress and development to people in any part of the world all at the same time.  We are seeing this across multiple industries now and I think this can partly change the way coaching is delivered in the future for the better. This is not to say that real life face to face coaching and playing is not the ultimate experience but more that the opportunities are now greater to access more knowledge, meet new squash friends and grow along the way.

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Where focus goes, energy flows

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The challenges of being coach and parent

by Hadrian Stiff

My 11 year old Son Elliott has just begun his junior tournament career and last weekend we travelled to London for the first event away from home. The main purpose of this event was to introduce the experiences of different courts, opponents and the pressure of this foreign environment and see how he responded and…

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Learning happens in the gaps.

by Hadrian Stiff

We have many different environments in which we can improve our squash. From lessons with a coach to solo practice, group training and matches there is always lots that can be learned from each. The key question for me as a coach is how best to help everyone to absorb and retain the most impactful…

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Another big thank you to Avon squash!

by John Welton

One of the hardest areas to maintain sustained growth in any country is in the junior programs. The pandemic has had a huge impact on our sport and particularly our junior programs. We have seen a really positive return to our junior squads but there has been a small drop in numbers. It is now…

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