This week we had a guest speaker take the time to talk to our comp team about mental health from the viewpoint of an athlete and the special challenges they face from coaches and parents.
Angelina Capella is a senior at Maeser Preparatory High School in Orem and as part of her capstone project, she did research on the mental health challenges that youth athletes face; including the ones she herself has faced. Angelina was an all-star player on her varsity basketball team. She’s also a 2nd degree Black Belt in taekwondo where she’s been a national champion in sparring. In 2019 she was selected to be part of Team USA and competed in Olympic-style sparring at the Cadet World Championships in Uzbekistan.
She shared about times when she experienced burnout in her sports and talked to our Pack about ways she managed to continue to LOVE her sports and prevent burnout. She used an acronym to teach our Pack the tools they can use to stay healthy.
P – Positive Self-Talk
Positive self-talk boosts self confidence and is crucial in succeeding in what you’re doing. “You’ve got this!” You are your greatest competitor.
E – Embrace Adversity
Remember that success and excellence requires effort and adversity. Pushing yourself when it gets tough makes you stronger and that’s when you get better. If it’s always easy, you don’t improve.
R – Reverse Engineer
Think about moments when you did your best and succeeded. Now go backwards and think about what types of attitudes, training, nutrition, whatever you did to help you succeed. Why did they work? Can you repeat them to succeed again?
F – Focus on the Now
Don’t dwell, stress, or overthink on the past. Don’t worry about what’s to come. Don’t get worked up about a race that hasn’t happened yet or linger on a race that already happened. Focus on right now, focus on what you have control over, and let the outcome happen.
E – Evolve
Try new things. Get out of your comfort zone. Always continue to learn and evolve as an athlete. It helps prevent burnout. In track, we encourage all of our athletes to try everything in our program; jumps, throws, hurdles, sprints, and long distance, to find what they love the most.
C – Chill Out
Remember to take breaks and rest. This is especially important after a big race. Both your body and your brain need time to recover. Have something that helps you rest; whether it’s reading a book, relaxing outside, sleeping in, watching a movie, even playing video games.
T – Talk it Out
“When it doubt, talk it out.” Have people in your life you can talk to when you’re struggling; people who will listen and take your struggles seriously. These can be parents, coaches, friends, or teachers. They can offer advice or just be there to listen.
Thank you so much Angelina, for taking the time to talk with our comp team. And also thank you to our comp team for being so attentive and great listeners.