Italian psychologist ignore the topic of the performance psychology

At a conference dedicated to the sport psychology and organized by the register of psychologists in Veneto which was attended by about 200 psychologists, today I gave a talk on the performance psychology applied to sport. I realized once again that the performance psychology is a subject little known by Italian psychologists.  This is probably due to the lack of this type of teaching at the university, all centered on understanding the different forms of distress and psychopathology rather than providing cognitive tools to know how to become experts in something.  The paths to become expert athletes or coaches are disregarded. This training deficiency determines  a vision of the human being in which the psychological difficulties that the individuals experience in their professional path are often interpreted in terms of psychopathology, not understanding instead that these difficulties are stimulated by the complexity of the performances to be provided. In football missing a penalty is not an extraordinary event but it could be if  the team lose an important game and the player who makes this mistake can live with this extreme discomfort this mistake, not because he/she has a psychopathology but for the consequences of the action. Psychologists ignore these implications and hide themselves behind words to their reassuring such as performance anxiety. They do not possess the theoretical tools to understand this phenomenon and they ignore how to deal with it, without going to the categories of psychopathology. It takes years to introduce the changes necessary to modify this way of thinking, because at this point the young psychologists can apply these knowledgel in the area of expert performance.

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