9th July 2014 – Huffington Post Blog – What We Can Learn from Athletes

As we sit on our sofas and bar stools enjoying the spectacle of athletes performing at Wimbledon, the World Cup and the Commonwealth Games, we can admire what the human body is capable of at the pinnacle of fitness and the extraordinary mental and physical strength and endurance required to reach that level. I work with many athletes at the top of their game to ensure that they don’t burn out; there are many things that we can learn from them, particularly with regards to the stresses that modern lifestyles put on the body.

Athletes need to put as much effort into their recovery and rest as they do their intense training. I have worked with athletes who suffer from sleep disorders because they are not listening to their bodies and are holding onto the idea that they must continually push their bodies to the limit, which leads to stress, anxiety and ultimately burnout. Athletes are under enormous pressure in the run up to and during competitions, which is exacerbated by the world’s media putting a microscope on their performance and their appearance for all to criticise. This trajectory of stress and anxiety is not conducive to optimising performance but is not limited to the sporting elite…

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