Tryouts Are a "Head Game"

September 18, 2012 | Cathy Shea

Baseball Tryouts

Tryouts can feel like one of the most anxiety-ridden days of your life. The moment you've spent all that time prepping for has finally arrived. This is your opportunity to demonstrate your skills and impress the coaching staff.

You devoted hours to developing your fundamental and technical skills, but so did your competition, so what will ultimately set you apart? The answers are "in your head." (Stay mentally tough with these tips.) Mental skills are the key factor for edging out other hopefuls. Here are some tips:

1. Shift your focus away from the outcome and stay present. This is when you should focus on relaxing, deep breathing and concentrating on the task in front of you.

2. Concentrate and do not allow your mind to wander. A lapse in concentration can be frustrating and detrimental to your performance.

3. Don't worry. Worrying will not prevent mistakes from happening, but it can create them. Be mindful of any personal expectations that may promote a sense of failure when you make mistakes.

4. The ability to regulate anxiety is indeed a skill. To perfect it, you need to integrate mental techniques into your practice sessions. Practicing coping skills on a daily basis will allow you to effectively deal with unforeseen events during tryouts.

5. Great preparation leads to great performance. You must consistently train your mind using mental strategies that will prepare you to handle an unforeseen distraction, a mistake, a sudden moment of intense nerves, an upset stomach, and the fear of not making the team.

Above all else, be positive. Most coaches will choose a player with a great attitude and above average skills over a player with exceptional skill and a bad attitude. Skills can be taught and improved. An attitude is difficult to change.

Cathy Shea
- Cathy Shea has more than 26 years of experience as a coach and personal trainer. She has worked with individuals, teams, aspiring athletes and competitive...
Cathy Shea
- Cathy Shea has more than 26 years of experience as a coach and personal trainer. She has worked with individuals, teams, aspiring athletes and competitive...

Featured Videos

Blake Griffin Interview and Cover Shoot Blake Griffin Interview and Cover Shoot Views: 588,664
Learn to Hit Open Three-Pointers With Damian Lillard's Baseline Drift Drill Learn to Hit Open Three-Pointers With Damian Lillard's Baseline Drift Drill Views: 241,761
Elite Performance With Mike Boyle: Teach Any Athlete How To Squat Properly Elite Performance With Mike Boyle: Teach Any Athlete How To Squat Properly Views: 284,490
Load More

Resources

STACK Fitness

Everything you need to be fitter than ever

STACK Conditioning

Sport-specific conditioning programs

Coaches and Trainers

Tips and advice for coaches and trainers

Magazine

Latest issues of STACK Magazine

STACK 4W

Women's sports workout, nutrition and lifestyle advice

Gamer

Gaming, entertainment and tech news

Basic Training

Military-style training for athletes

News

Find the latest news relevant to athletes

Most Popular Videos

Dustin Pedroia on Training Dustin Pedroia on Training
Views: 10,920,844
Peyton Manning Dumbbell Bench With 80+ Pounds Peyton Manning Dumbbell Bench With 80+ Pounds
Views: 43,151,981
Robert Griffin III Pocket Presence QB Drill Robert Griffin III Pocket Presence QB Drill
Views: 6,866,164
Dwight Howard Stays in the Gym All Night Dwight Howard Stays in the Gym All Night
Views: 6,099,366
Drew Brees Will Not Be Denied Drew Brees Will Not Be Denied
Views: 12,009,040

Load More
More Cool Stuff You'll Like
Tips to Be a Better Leader

Tips to Be a Better Leader

Overcome the 5 Most Common Mental Mistakes in Sports

Overcome the 5 Most Common Mental Mistakes in Sports

How to 'Keep Your Cool' on the Football Field

How to 'Keep Your Cool' on the Football Field

The One Word You Should Never Say to Yourself

The One Word You Should Never Say to Yourself

The Holistic Approach to Impactful Sports Coaching

The Holistic Approach to Impactful Sports Coaching

Positive Affirmations for Athletes

Positive Affirmations for Athletes

Stress Exposure Training for Basketball

Stress Exposure Training for Basketball

A Coach Describes What It’s Like to Cut Players

A Coach Describes What It's Like to Cut Players

How Mentally Tough Are You?

How Mentally Tough Are You?

Using Sports Imagery as Pre-Performance Routine

Using Sports Imagery as Pre-Performance Routine

Does Home Field Actually Confer an Advantage?

Does Home Field Actually Confer an Advantage?

5 Tips to Becoming a Successful Athlete

5 Tips to Becoming a Successful Athlete

Regain Your Confidence by Getting BIG

Regain Your Confidence by Getting BIG

Mental Warm-Up: How to Build Confidence Before a Game

Mental Warm-Up: How to Build Confidence Before a Game

Can a Faster Brain Increase Sports Performance?

Can a Faster Brain Increase Sports Performance?

5 Steps to Becoming a Better Coach

5 Steps to Becoming a Better Coach

What's Your Backup Plan When 'Plan A' Fails?

What's Your Backup Plan When 'Plan A' Fails?

Study: Athletes Think Faster, More Accurately Than Non-Athletes

Study: Athletes Think Faster, More Accurately Than Non-Athletes

How Clayton Kershaw Gets in the Zone

How Clayton Kershaw Gets in the Zone

Use Sports Psychology Against Your Opponents

Use Sports Psychology Against Your Opponents

4 Obstacles to Better Goal Setting

4 Obstacles to Better Goal Setting

4 Tips for Building Confidence

4 Tips for Building Confidence

Overcome Your Fear of Failure

Overcome Your Fear of Failure

3 Strategies to Reduce Stress and Increase Athletic Performance

3 Strategies to Reduce Stress and Increase Athletic Performance

Why Athletes Must Focus on Developing Their Own Identity

Why Athletes Must Focus on Developing Their Own Identity

5 Steps to Changing a Bad Habit

5 Steps to Changing a Bad Habit

Growth Mindset: How to Think Like a Champion

Growth Mindset: How to Think Like a Champion

Build Mental Toughness in the Weight Room

Build Mental Toughness in the Weight Room

4 Reasons Your Team Is Losing

4 Reasons Your Team Is Losing

5 Tips for Playing Mentally Tough Tennis

5 Tips for Playing Mentally Tough Tennis

The Art of Strength and Conditioning Coaching

The Art of Strength and Conditioning Coaching

The Athletic Brain: How to Learn to Anticipate

The Athletic Brain: How to Learn to Anticipate

Why You Should Be Training Instead of Exercising

Why You Should Be Training Instead of Exercising

Home Field Advantage Is Real, Says Science

Home Field Advantage Is Real, Says Science

Get Tough on Your Goals to Get Fit

Get Tough on Your Goals to Get Fit

6 Ways Sport Parents Are Doing It Wrong

6 Ways Sport Parents Are Doing It Wrong

How to Improve Mental Focus on the Baseball Diamond

How to Improve Mental Focus on the Baseball Diamond

How Mental Flexibility Boosts Your Game

How Mental Flexibility Boosts Your Game

How Mental Performance Affects Your Workouts

How Mental Performance Affects Your Workouts

Q&A: How to Deal With a Tough Coach

Q&A: How to Deal With a Tough Coach

YardBarker