meditation and sport

Lahiri lauds effects of meditation

SuperSport: A decade spent practising the art of meditation has played a fundamental role in transforming Anirban Lahiri from an also-ran golfer into a world-class performer, the Indian said.

The 27-year-old has surged to 34th in the world rankings after winning two of the last three European Tour events, this month’s Malaysian Open and the Indian Open on Sunday.

Both victories were close calls – Lahiri pipped Austria’s Bernd Wiesberger by one shot in Kuala Lumpur and overcame compatriot SSP Chawrasia in a playoff in New Delhi.

He believes the …

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Red Sox create new behavioral health department

Alex Speier, The Boston Globe: The annual announcement of Red Sox front office personnel changes typically features an array of title changes and newly hired evaluators who put in critical but unseen work, and this year’s will be little different — except, perhaps, on one count.

Amid the announcement of promotions and hires will be the mention of an unusual addition to baseball operations. According to team and industry sources, the Red Sox will name Dr. Richard Ginsburg, co-director of the PACES Institute of Sports Psychology at Massachusetts General Hospital, as the …

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Aerobics for the brain? Fitness experts praise mindfulness meditation

wildmind meditation newsDorene Internicola, Reuters: Fitness experts call it bicep curls for the brain and aerobics for the mind. Whatever the name, athletes and gym addicts are discovering how mindfulness meditation can enliven a workout routine and invigorate a sports performance.

They say that mindfulness meditation, which focuses on the present moment to clear the mind, can help an exerciser overcome boredom and an athlete zero in on the task at hand.

“Mindfulness meditation is a hot topic actively studied in sports medicine,” said Gregory Chertok, a sports psychology consultant with the American College of Sports Medicine.

The art of living in the present moment …

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Women’s hockey star Hayley Wickenheiser works meditation into her routine

Gregory Strong,The Canadian Press: Canadian women’s hockey captain Hayley Wickenheiser has tinkered with preparation techniques over the years to keep her game at the highest possible level.

Now 34 and a veteran of five Winter Olympics, Wickenheiser has shifted away from the heavier weights she lifted in her younger days. She focuses more on functional strength training now, still does regular yoga sessions and has kept making improvements to adjust to the more speed-focused style on the ice.

Wickenheiser also recently added meditation into the mix and it has made an immediate impact.

“I’m a little bit more centred and I feel less anxious …

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Liverpool FC’s meditation training to be featured on TV

DNA: A meditation and relaxation class to help Liverpool players “deal with the stresses of club football” is one of the new methods introduced under the tenure of Brendan Rodgers, a new fly-on-the-wall documentary capturing life behind the scenes at Anfield has revealed.

The six-part series, due to be aired in the United States later this month (September), documents the arrival of Rodgers and sheds light on his methods. They include the manager talking about the importance of developing players as people as well as footballers.

One of the methods is a meditation and relaxation class, which is taken by ‘exercise physiologist’ Molly Kim during the club’s pre-season tour of the USA.

But the introduction of the class appears to bemuse the players, who can be seen struggling to keep straight faces and at times burst into laughter – apparently at the absurdity of what they are being asked to do.

Jamie Carragher, one of the club’s most senior players, appears -frequently on the verge of laughter as he carries out the meditation exercises to the sound of calming …

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Meditation and chanting to boost confidence of Olympic athletes

The monk in charge of the Buddhist shrine inside the Olympic Village says it is a privilege to look after the psychological well-being of more than 500 Buddhists in the Village.

It is, however, not only the Buddhists who seek his spiritual guidance, says the Most Ven Bogoda Seelawimala Thera.

As well as the athletes from Buddhist countries such as China, Thailand, Taiwan, Japan, Korea and Sri Lanka, there are others also who regularly visit the shrine.

“And there are non-Buddhists in the delegations of those Buddhist countries,” he told BBC Sinhala service.

“When whoever comes to my shrine first of all I welcome …

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Lahiri counts on meditation in British Open

Indian Sports News Network: Lytham St Annes: Anirban Lahiri will be counting on his meditation practice to lead him to a successful debut at The Open Championship which begins on Thursday. The 25-year-old two-time Asian Tour winner is excited at the prospects of tackling the world’s oldest Major which is star-laden at Royal Lytham and St Annes but knows he must maintain an even keel to ensure a rewarding week. “I’ll stick to my meditation and stay in the moment and not get carried away and focus on what I need to do. It’ll play a critical role. Times of great highs and low, the mind gets muddled and unclear. I have to rely on meditation as it’ll only do me good,” said Lahiri. Lahiri has been meditating for the past few years, saying the longest he has done was three hours while he spends about 20 minutes each day while he is at a tournament. The key benefit of the practice is simply staying in the present, he said. “The benefit that I have derived from my meditation is that I’m able to stay in the present. That’s what everyone talks about, hit one shot at a time and we all wonder how to do it. The meditation has taught me to block out the scoreboard, what the group in front is doing or how far back or ahead I am. All those things kind of get sidetracked and the focus comes back to what I need to do. That’s what meditation helps me to do,” he explained. “It’s like a process, like an exercise. You can be in that state during the round depending on how strong your practices are. If you can put yourself in that state, you can go through 18 holes in your own world without being affected by what’s around you. That’s what really helps.” Lahiri arrived in the English coastal town on Saturday and has put in three practice rounds at the famous links. While others may have cringed when the rain and winds swept in earlier in the week, the Indian relished the tough conditions which are synonymous with The Open. “I’m enjoying the weather so far. A lot of people here whom I’ve met are not comfortable in this condition but I’m feeling at home. I expected the course as tough as it’s been set up. Leading into the event, I’m feeling good,” said Lahiri, who is one of two Indians in the field aside from newly crowned Scottish Open champion Jeev Milkha Singh. “I’m hitting it good. I’m happy with my equipment set up, I’m feeling very comfortable.” In late May, the amiable India made a visit to Royal Lytham and St Annes and played for several practice rounds. However, he said being here during The Open week was simply magical. “The atmosphere is beautiful, the people come out here despite the rain and cold and you see families out with their kids in strollers. It’s a pleasure to be here and be part of a beautiful event. I’m hoping I can put in a good performance to make it better,” he said. Lahiri is happy his father has accompanied him for his maiden Major. “Dad’s always been the guy behind the scenes. He’s the one to give me some insight into how I’m playing. He’ll provide the perspective of a third party. If he notices something, he will share with me and ask me to think about it. Sometimes that’s what it takes to save a shot or two or to get your attitude right. “I’m glad he’s here. I know he’s having a great time and it makes me happy as well. He’s taking good care of me. He’s always full of wise words.”

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Yoga and meditation for Indian Olympic hockey team

Set to return to the Olympic stage after eight years, the Indian hockey team is working hard on being a mentally strong unit by practicing yoga and meditation before the London Games.

“Olympics is the topmost event and we are playing there after eight years. So, naturally there is pressure to perform. We are practicing Yoga daily for 40 minutes to enhance mental strength,” said Indian captain Bharat Chetri.

“We also have an interactive sessions with coach Micheal Nobbs and Trainer David John daily in which they share their good experiences. John has also started an innovative mental visualisation session on a daily basis which is a sort of meditation,” he said.

The mental visualisation sessions have been a regular affair for the past one month.

“We take part in mental visualisation sessions before every match for the last one month. It is a sort of meditation. We all lie down and forget about the external world. David (John) then makes us imagine the real match situation according to the opponent,” he said.

“We all imagine that how we are going to react in that situation. It is so useful that we choose team composition and make strategy according to that,” he added.

Chetri is well aware that Mission London is going to be very tough for them but he goes by the new mantra of “convert your weaknesses into your strength”.

This is what London Olympic (1948) gold medallist Lezley Claudius and Keshav Dutt told Chetri before the team’s departure for the Europe tour.

“I know London Olympics will be a very tough challenge. But I got a chance to meet Mr Claudius and Mr Dutt before our departure. They told me to convert weaknesses into strengths. Whenever we have a bad period on field, this mantra comes into my mind and inspires me to excel,” said the veteran goalkeeper.

“We have to improve our passing. We played well in some matches on the Europe tour but passing is not upto the mark. We are working hard on it,” said the captain.

According to him the strength of the team lies in bonding.

“Team bonding, focus and attacking game are our strengths. We have an excellent forward line and I am sure they will live upto the expectations,” he said.

“We are playing together for the last six months. There is great coordination among players. If one has a problem, all are there to solve that. Being a captain, I am very fortunate to lead such a bunch of great players,” said Chetri.

India will play their first match against Holland on July 30 and Chetri is confident of winning that.

“It is a tough match but we are ready for that. We are confident that if we play to our potential, we can win that. Our penalty corner specialists Sandeep Singh and VR Raghunath have some new weapons in their armour and they will open their cards in Olympics only.” he said.

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Meditating Buddhist monk saddles up for Olympics

He’d prefer enlightenment to a medal, but when Japan’s horse-riding Buddhist monk Kenki Sato saddles up for London 2012, he’ll be representing one of the Olympics’ more unusual families.

Shaven-headed Sato, who starts each day with a morning prayer, is following his younger brother Eiken, who also trained as a priest and rode at the Beijing Games. His sister, Tae, 24, is a five-time national showjumping champion.

And his father, Shodo, who heads a 460-year-old temple and adjacent horse-riding club, was a member of Japan’s equestrian team before the 1980 Games in Moscow — only to have his Olympic dream dashed when Japan boycotted.

Kenki Sato is …

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India golfer Shiv Kapur benefitting from meditation regimen

Learning to meditate seems to be paying off for India’s Shiv Kapur as he prepares for the upcoming Ballantine’s Championship in Korea.
The talented Indian will head to Korea, sanctioned by the Asian Tour, European Tour and Korean Golf Tour, with his confidence sky high after finishing joint third at the CIMB Niaga Indonesian Masters presented by PNTS on Sunday.

It was Kapur’s best finish on the Asian Tour in nearly 18 months and his cheque of US$41,362 has pushed him up to 16th place on the latest Order of Merit, which is led by South African Jbe Kruger.

“I just want to build …

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