When Tiger Woods is optimally focused "in the zone", he wins: Is it due to absorption, concentration, desensitization, flow and/or optimal brain wave states

Description

The Absorption that allows an athlete, a surgeon, an astronaut or a musician to get into the Zone, i.e., to block out all distractions unrelated to performance has been assessed by Tellegen, Csikszentmihalyi and others in self-report measures. It occurs relatively rarely at the very highest levels and is very elusive to achieve. Qualitatively speaking, it is the phenomena of being totally immersed in the activity with time moving slowly, senses being sharpened, but pain not recognized. Thoughts and images are clear and controllable while physical performance seems effortless and automatic. To measure this phenomenon accurately and completely is not possible in a dynamic state, but to shape it's appearance and to extend duration is essential in finite psychomotor skills like golf.

Physical preparation for performance is mentally grueling and fatiguing. If often results in trance-like, dis-associative and sometimes dissociative states where depersonalization is a valuable technique to block out the intense suffering and pain associated with running, swimming or bicycling. The difficulty in sport is being able to switch in and out of full alertness for some strategic tasks while remaining in the dissociative state for endurance. The experience of flow, absorption and being in the zone is to harness power and ultimately unleash explosive yet finely titrated effort.

Concentration is the umbrella concept that also encompasses EMDR. The process of actively shifting eye focus from left to right while striving to hold an image or statement of emotionality is exceedingly difficult and ultimately beyond control. The combination of EMDR with neurofeedback is an innovative intervention that holds potential for greater impact in removing negative images of failed effort or in solidifying the recall of a successful effort. The neurofeedback serves to reinforce the development of greater mental stamina toward intensively focus comparable to zooming in a camera lens thus blocking out distractions and irrelevant stimuli. Enhanced quality of visualization is the desired outcome for the performance enhancement sport psychology consultant and his/her client.

Format

Conference

Language

English

Author(s)

Wesley Sime

Original Work Citation

Sime, W., (2002). When Tiger Woods is optimally focused "in the zone", he wins: Is it due to absorption, concentration, desensitization, flow and/or optimal brain wave states. Presentation at the 10th Winter Brain Meeting Miami, FL

Collection

Citation

“When Tiger Woods is optimally focused "in the zone", he wins: Is it due to absorption, concentration, desensitization, flow and/or optimal brain wave states,” Francine Shapiro Library, accessed August 12, 2020, https://emdria.omeka.net/items/show/18317.

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