As football season kicks off this weekend, a fascinating article about how the Seattle Seahawks are incorporating meditation into their training.
Talking about former Patriots and USC head coach Peter Carroll:
His dream was to fundamentally change the way players are coached. The timeworn strategy is, of course, to be a hard-ass -- think Bear Bryant banning water breaks, Vince Lombardi screaming and yelling, Mike Rice throwing basketballs at players' heads, Nick Saban berating his team on the sideline. Carroll craved a chance to reimagine the coaching role in the NFL. "I wanted to find out if we went to the NFL and really took care of guys, really cared about each and every individual, what would happen?"
Team sports psychologist Mike Gervais leads the team in regular meditation sessions:
Gervais is about to lead a meditation session and, as he always does, instructs the players to hit record on their phone voice-recorder apps and to close their eyes. Then he starts guiding them: "Quiet your minds," "Focus your attention inwardly" and "Visualize success."
And my favorite quote from 2010 1st round pick offensive tackle Russell Okung:
"Meditation is as important as lifting weights and being out here on the field for practice," Okung says. "It's about quieting your mind and getting into certain states where everything outside of you doesn't matter in that moment. There are so many things telling you that you can't do something, but you take those thoughts captive, take power over them and change them."