24. February 2020
Why Emotional Intelligence is Something That is Very Important in Sports
_Sports psychology is a branch of science that attempts to understand the internal world of an athlete. In other words, it studies the processes that have an influence of the behavior of an athlete, including their emotional intelligence. Below we will look at how emotional intelligence in cricket can help you. _
Emotional Intelligence and Sports
In cricket (well, in all sports really), the players have to deal with major demands and expectations. The differences that you see in their performances are not just down to nutrition and physical training, but also because of their mental state.
When you are taking part in sports, you need to have the ability to control all of your emotions or be able to redirect them **so that they do not have a negative outcome on your performance. **
Emotional intelligence in sports is a really interesting topic and it is something that is considered to be extremely important. Sport psychologists have a variety of relaxation techniques as well as various exercises for visualization and concentration. In fact, emotional intelligence is so important that sports teams are now hiring sports psychologists to help improve their performances.
The Benefits of Having Emotional Intelligence When Playing Sport
Emotional intelligence in cricket can lead to a better performance, more success, and more motivation. However, emotional intelligence depends on the personality of the athlete as well as how good they are when they need to perform under pressure.
When a professional athlete is under a lot of pressure, they will need to make split second decisions. In cricket, the batsmen are always under immense pressure as they know that one mistake will see them walking back to the pavilion. That is why it is really impressive when a batsman bats for hours and racks up a huge score. **The mental strength that it takes to bat for hours and hours is something that not many people will be able to comprehend. **
Below you can see some of the benefits of having emotional intelligence in sports such as cricket.
Emotionally: It makes the athlete’s desire to achieve their goals much stronger. Furthermore, it strengthens their competitiveness, their professional and personal values, their leadership skills, their emotional control, and their empathy.
Physically: It helps them to manage their time better when it comes to resting and they will be able to establish eating habits that will help them perform to the best of their abilities.
Socially: Will help them to improve the relationships that they have with coaches, teammates, and physiotherapists.
Rationally: They will be able to learn more about how their sport works on a tactical and technical level.
The Importance of Being Able to Control Your Emotions
When you are playing sport at any level, you need to have the ability to keep all of your emotions in check. Failure to do so could result in you doing something rash that will lead to a negative outcome.
To stick with cricket, let us take sledging as an example. When batsmen are batting, the opposing fielders will often try to put them off by saying something that they know might affect them emotionally. The aim here is to emotionally upset the batsman so that they produce a rash shot and get themselves out.
The very best batsmen, the ones that are able to ignore the sledges and keep all of their emotions in check will be the ones that go on to make a lot of runs.
One cricketer who was always able to block out everything that was being said around him and just concentrate on playing each delivery on its merit was Alastair Cook. Those who are fans of England and Australian cricket will never forget the 2011⁄11 Ashes series in Australia. England went on to win the series 3-1, but Cook was the player of the series as he scored a staggering 766 at an average just below 128.00. He batted for more than 30 hours during that successful series.
It was not a fluke either as he showed in a series against Pakistan four years later. In one of the tests, he batted for 836 minutes in intense heat. Impressively, his stay at the crease lasted longer than the combined time of the England football team at the 2014 FIFA World Cup and the England rugby team at the 2015 Rugby World Cup. He could have batted for even longer if the umpire had realized that the **Shoaib Malik had bowled a no-ball. **
When Cook retired from international cricket he had broken nearly every record for his country. It is safe to say that he could not have been such a successful cricketer if he had poor emotional intelligence.
To Sum Up
So, as we have highlighted, being emotional intelligent when it comes to sports has plenty of benefits. New studies about the importance of emotional intelligence in sport are becoming more of a regular occurrence, so we are going to continue to find out more in the near future.
In sports, the little things can make a huge difference. For example, in cricket, playing a shot a second late or a second early can be the difference between scoring runs or getting out. Bowling the ball a centimeter off target can be the difference between picking up a wicket or getting hit for a four or a six. Emotional intelligence is small, but it is something that can make a huge difference.