Thanks for joining us for part two of our series on competition anxiety and how to control it. If you’re just joining us, don’t forget to go back and read over part one. It contained critical information to this series as it explains what anxiety is, and what causes it. This type of performance anxiety can have crippling effects on your performance during competitions.
That’s why today’s post is more focused on the techniques you can use to overcome it. Are you searching for the best UFC gym in Raleigh NC? Call Gracie today! We’re not your typical gym as we specialize in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Muay Thai, and more. Call today and ask about our free classes.
Controlling Your Competition Anxiety
Your anxiety should be able to be controlled using the following simple techniques. The first is education. We mainly covered this in the first post, but to recap, you have to know the “what” and “where” of your anxiety before you can actively fix it. That means know what anxiety is, and what is causing it. For instance, if you’re scared of getting punched in the face, then a contact sport might not be for you and you should move on.
Secondly, you have to learn how to breathe. Breathing exercises are at the top of every athlete’s training list when it comes to relaxation tactics. Belly breathing, or diaphragmatic breathing, is when you breath by contracting your diaphragm. This technique will activate your relaxation response, which is the opposite of the fight or flight one, and makes for a great relaxation tool when preparing for a match. Belly breathing is also great for getting more oxygen into your bloodstream. This helps keep your muscle endurance up. To learn the belly breathing method, simply place your left hand on your abdomen and your right hand on your upper chest. When you take a breath in, your left hand should move out and your right hand should remain relatively still.
Next, dedication to training and preparedness will help you deal with competition jitters. There is nothing like knowing you’re ready to do battle and that you’ve prepared to the best of your ability. Being ready and knowing that you’ve given it your all during training should help you relax some and give you the confidence you’ll need to perform.
Finally, just know that there are some things that are out of your control. Focus on the things that you can control. You can only control you and your emotions. So visualize victory and focus on the positives of what’s gotten you so far in the first place.
We hope these tips will help you control your competition anxiety. Just know that it does get better with more training time as you’ll be more comfortable with techniques, and you’ll be able to handle more situations easily.
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We even have specific programs for women and children. There are also no contracts for children, so you don’t have worry about continuing to pay for classes if they change their minds about participating. Gracie also offers FREE martial classes. Call us today to learn more, or to get started.