Tag Archive for 'mindfulness'

The meditation in sport

Phil Jackson and Kobe Bryant talk about the relevance of mindfulness and meditation to develop the self-control and full mastery of ourselves during the competition.

“It’s like having an anchor. If I don’t do it I feel like I’m constantly chasing the day as opposed to being in control” – Kobe

“You seat on the bench, you take a deep breath and you reset yourself; and you do that through the mindfulness.” – Phil


Risultati immagini per Phil Jackson & Kobe Bryant discuss the value of meditation and mindfulness

Mindfulness can reduce the burnout

Chunxiao Li et al., (2019).Mindfulness and Athlete Burnout: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(3), 449.

This review aims to identify, appraise, and synthesize studies reporting the relationship between mindfulness and athlete burnout and the effects of mindfulness-based interventions (MBIs) on athlete burnout. few variables may account for the relationship between mindfulness and athlete burnout.

Gustafsson et al. (2015) found that mindfulness had an indirect effect on athlete burnout through negative/positive affect. As negative affect has been viewed as an indicator of burnout susceptibility (Lemyre et al. 2006), mindfulness is likely to prevent burnout through adjusting athletes’ affect. Zhang and colleagues (2016) proposed another possible mechanism. They claimed that athletes with high levels of mindfulness tend to have low levels of experiential avoidance (i.e., willingness to avoid negative experience because of the distress brought on by the experience, which may in turn minimize the maladaptive influences of stressors and other negative factors on burnout.

The use of meditation in sport

The use of mindfulness seems to be one of the new strategies and techniques to train mentally athletes to stay focused on the present and on their performances, rather than be dominated by competitive stress. It want to remember that 40 years ago transcendental meditation and zen were already described as modes suitable to sports. At this regard, I report what had written at that time  two of the sports psychologists who have provided significant contributions in term of innovation and efficiency of their approach.

Robert Nideffer (1976) in the book “The inner athlete”:

“Trascendental meditation (TM) procedures can be helpful in improving an athlete’s general feeling of well-being as well as increasing his energy level and his ability to concentrate … they are very useful to athletes who engage in endurance events which require little in the way of external attention … keeps him from becoming locked into negative, self-defeating thoughts and feelings … most applicable in those competitive situations where an athlete’s responses require non thought, where movements have been learned so well that they have become automatic … complicated gymnastics routines or dives are often practiced to the point where they are almost reflexive” (p.179).

Terry Orlick (1980) in the book “In pursuit of excellence”:

“Thinking is useful in many ways, but there some occasions when thinking interferes with the task and you have to leave it behind …

In such cases, you cease to be your own conscious master but become an instrument in the hands of the unknown. The unknown has no ego-consciousness and consequently no thought of winning the contest … it is for this reason that sword moves where it ought to move and makes the contest end victoriously. This is the practical application of the Lao-tzuan doctrine of doing by not doing” (p.146, corsivo è di Daisetz Suzuki, Zen and Japanese Culture).

Relaxation, yoga, meditation, mindfulness

Relaxation, yoga, meditation, mindfulness

do you want but do something

Risultati immagini per yoga day 2017

Mindfulness enhances adolescents’ memory

A Randomized Controlled Trial Examining the Effect of Mindfulness Meditation on Working Memory Capacity in Adolescents

Quach, D., Jastrowski Mano, K.E., and Alexander, K,     J. Adolesc Health 2015

This is the first study to provide support for the benefits of short-term mindfulness practice, specifically mindfulness meditation, in improving work memory capacity. The study has involved 198 adolescents recruited from a large public middle school in southwest United States and randomly assigned to mindfulness meditation, hatha yoga, or a waitlist control condition. Results highlight the importance of investigating the components of mindfulness-based interventions among adolescents given that such interventions may improve cognitive function.



Psychoterapy + mindfulness effective as pharmacological therapy for depression

I find it interesting to publish in full the abstract of the article in which it was shown that in the treatment of depression, cognitive behavioral therapy associated with mindfulness produces results similar to those of the pharmacological therapy.

Effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of mindfulness-based cognitive therapy compared with maintenance antidepressant treatment in the prevention of depressive relapse or recurrence (PREVENT): a randomised controlled trial



Individuals with a history of recurrent depression have a high risk of repeated depressive relapse or recurrence. Maintenance antidepressants for at least 2 years is the current recommended treatment, but many individuals are interested in alternatives to medication. Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT) has been shown to reduce risk of relapse or recurrence compared with usual care, but has not yet been compared with maintenance antidepressant treatment in a definitive trial. We aimed to see whether MBCT with support to taper or discontinue antidepressant treatment (MBCT-TS) was superior to maintenance antidepressants for prevention of depressive relapse or recurrence over 24 months.


In this single-blind, parallel, group randomised controlled trial (PREVENT), we recruited adult patients with three or more previous major depressive episodes and on a therapeutic dose of maintenance antidepressants, from primary care general practices in urban and rural settings in the UK. Participants were randomly assigned to either MBCT-TS or maintenance antidepressants (in a 1:1 ratio) with a computer-generated random number sequence with stratification by centre and symptomatic status. Participants were aware of treatment allocation and research assessors were masked to treatment allocation. The primary outcome was time to relapse or recurrence of depression, with patients followed up at five separate intervals during the 24-month study period. The primary analysis was based on the principle of intention to treat. The trial is registered with Current Controlled Trials, ISRCTN26666654.


Between March 23, 2010, and Oct 21, 2011, we assessed 2188 participants for eligibility and recruited 424 patients from 95 general practices. 212 patients were randomly assigned to MBCT-TS and 212 to maintenance antidepressants. The time to relapse or recurrence of depression did not differ between MBCT-TS and maintenance antidepressants over 24 months (hazard ratio 0·89, 95% CI 0·67–1·18; p=0·43), nor did the number of serious adverse events. Five adverse events were reported, including two deaths, in each of the MBCT-TS and maintenance antidepressants groups. No adverse events were attributable to the interventions or the trial.


We found no evidence that MBCT-TS is superior to maintenance antidepressant treatment for the prevention of depressive relapse in individuals at risk for depressive relapse or recurrence. Both treatments were associated with enduring positive outcomes in terms of relapse or recurrence, residual depressive symptoms, and quality of life.

Mindfulness and marathon

Yesterday there was the webinar titled “The marathon mental coaching” and one question concerned the use of mindfulness in the marathon. If we mean with mindfulness “to allow the present to be as it is and to allow us to be, simply, in this present” (John Teasdale) this mental condition can certainly be useful to the marathon. During the long distance running the present is the stride or the breath. Learn how to listen it’s especially useful in the early pahses and in the end of the marathon, in which for the athletes is important to be aware of the reactions of the body. During the run the mindfulness can be differentiate from non-judgmental acceptance of the present, because the athletes may be aware that they are in trouble. For example, they realize that breathing became too frequent or the heart rate is too high, or even that the stride is becoming increasingly heavy. In these moments, the runners have to go in a state of mind more active, with the aim to reduce or counteract these feelings that are undermining the run.The runners maybe short the stride or slow down a few seconds the speed or shift the attention to other aspects, distracting from these debilitating feelings. Many runners use a dissociative strategy allowing to be focused on anything else but your own body. Paula Radcliffe said that in these moments she counts to 100, knowing that after she counted three times she ran another mile. Every runner has to find solutions during workouts. The marathon training is very challenging and difficult times met are used to find these answers and begin to put them into practice, so as to arrive at the day of the race the runners will be mentally prepared.

5 steps to mindfulness meditation

Meditation tips: sit cross-legged, notice your breath

Meditation tips: don't judge yourself or try to ignore distractions

(da Time, February 3, adapted from Full catastrophe living, 2° edit. by Jon Kabat-Zinn)