Sport & Exercise Psychology

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Hope Youngs

Graduating from Staffordshire University back in 2018 with a Masters degree in Applied Sport and Exercise Psychology, am currently studying a Professional Doctorate in Sport and Exercise Psychology with Liverpool John Moores University. Once graduated will not only have Doctorate accreditation but also will be HCPC registered and will attain the British Psychological Society stage 2 award in Sport and Exercise Psychology. Developing my interest in both domains I decided becoming a level 3 qualified personal trainer was the next step to add value to my practice.

 

Sport Psychologist work mainly within elite performing athletes. However, are not restricted to this population as it is viable to work within any performing situation be it business, education, military and health care. Topics that may be covered when working with a performer include anxiety, motivation, attention, self-efficacy and confidence. These are all areas that can be addressed using psychoeducational sessions. Implementing theory and research through psychological skills training can be one way to improve the athlete’s performance. Skills taught can include imagery, goal setting, self-talk, relaxation and mindfulness, all interventions are tailored to the athlete and their specific performance setting.

 

Exercise Psychology surrounds itself within the general public, this population aim to improve their exercise participation for both their physical and mental health. Many are aware of the importance of exercise for reducing health risks such as diabetes, stroke, heart attack and premature death, however it is also as important to promote exercise and physical activity for mental health and wellbeing. Part of this role is to understand any barriers which can prevent someone from exercise participation and therefore create a pathway to assist and motivate them to overcoming their barriers. Now as a qualified level 3 personal trainer, implementing exercise psychology is an important part of my brand as is different from many other personal trainers available. In the future, I would like to educate personal trainers and others in the industry about the importance of psychology within exercise giving them the tools to incorporate this into their training sessions.

 

My philosophy of practice as an interactionist means I believe there is a strong connection between the mind and the body. Therefore, using psychology to teach individuals how to improve their cognitive abilities will have an effect on their physical skills. Within an elite performance setting this can enable overall performance times to be decreased or improvement of a singular skill, to enhancing life satisfaction and creating a positive mindset to decrease sedentary behaviour. As a research-based practitioner, the use of theoretical underpinning within consultancy allows the athlete or individual to have a more meaningful experience and develop further autonomy within their behaviour and performance.

Qualifications:

  • MSc Applied Sport and Exercise Psychology, Staffordshire University, 2018

  • MBPsS Graduate Chartership, British Psychological Society (BPS)

  • Mental Health First Aider, MHFA England

  • Mental Health Awareness for Sport and Physical Activity, 1st 4Sport Learning

  • Level 3 Personal Trainer

  • Level 1 First Aid, BCU England

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