“The most important thing? Self-confidence. Without that skill, and I use the word skill intentionally, without that skill, we are useless as a player. Because when you lose sight or belief in yourself, we’re done for. I use the definition of self-confidence to be the ability or the belief to believe in yourself, to accomplish any task, no matter the odds, no matter the difficulty, no matter the adversity.” – Dr. Ivan Joseph, Head Coach of the Ryerson University Varsity Soccer team, in the TEDx Talk, ‘The Skill of Self-Confidence

Many years ago, when I started coaching, I was very ambitious and pushed my athletes very hard. But soon, I realized that, if I wanted the best results from the team, I couldn’t be the one who always pushes. I learned that the most effective driving force is the one that comes directly from the athlete.

But what determines how driven an athlete is? In my experience, the answer is self-confidence.

I spent many years trying different strategies to teach self-confidence to my athletes. Over time, I came to understand that self-confidence is directly related to our sense of control and power over our performance.

The more you perceive that you have power over the events in your life, the more you feel in control, the more you are willing to make efforts to progress, because you know that you have the means to take up the challenges that are presented to you.

The 3 Zones of Action in Ultimate

One way to increase your sense of control over your performance is to train regularly in the appropriate action area.

There are 3 zones of action in ultimate:

  1. The Comfort Zone
  2. The Panic / Frustration Zone
  3. The Performance Zone


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This article was published on Ultiworld, a website dedicated to the sport of Ultimate.