OPTIMIZING SPORT PERFORMANCE THROUGH BIOFEEDBACK INDUCED RELAXATION AND STRESS MANAGEMENT AMONG ELITE ATHLETES
Mohan, J. and Kaur, J., Panjab University, India
Stress in elite sportspersons at the time of competitions is a very common phenomenon. Elite athletes are characterized by intense devotion and commitment to game preparation and performance. Elite players face a lot of stress both on the field and off the field e.g. worries about failure in competition, not being able to come up to expectations of others, cost of training, financial worries, self doubts, pressure to perform and competitive anxiety. Therefore any relaxation given to elite athletes to reduce the stress faced by them is likely to improve/optimize their performance. The present study investigated the comparative effect of biofeedback induced relaxation techniques on the perceptual motor skills in elite athletes. These skills viz concentration, arousal, psychomotor co- ordination, psychomotor stability and visual-perceptual threshold play very important role in sport performance. The sample comprised 200 athletes of various sports disciplines from National Institute of Sports. They were state level and national level players (155 Males and 45 Females). The paradigm of research followed was a pre-post design. Baseline Measurements of the perceptual motor skills in elite athletes was done in the beginning. After that, they were exposed to Biofeedback induced relaxation techniques in conjunction with Modified Autogenic Training. This was followed by post- relaxation measurement of perceptual motor skills. Descriptive and Inferential statistics were used to analyze the data. Results revealed positive effect of all the four biofeedback induced relaxation techniques on majority of psychomotor skills chosen. Use of biofeedback techniques to improve performance and reduce stress are discussed.