She was one of the most impressive competitors I ever coached and she followed a specific routine prior to performing a competition dive:

    • Sit in a secluded spot

    • Listen to her preferred music

    • Monitor and control her energy level & breathing

    • Talk with her coach

    • Engage in self-talk & nod her head

    • Physically rehearse the dive

    • Close her eyes & visualize the dive

    • Get on the board early

    • Set the fulcrum and place her feet

    • Remind herself of one or two key actions

    • Repeat her anchoring positive self-statement

    • Focus on the end of the board (Quiet Eye)

    • Take a shallow breath and start her approach

Notice that her routine includes the 5 pillars of mental skills: Visualization, self-talk, energy management, cognitive restructuring, and self-monitoring.

Pre-performance routines help divers get to that place where they are ready to perform at their best. Every elite athlete in every sport has a consciously developed and well-practiced pre-performance routine. Help your divers develop a personal pre-performance routine that fits their needs and works best for them. Have them use it regularly in practice so it becomes natural, comfortable, and automatic—especially in critical competition moments.