For centuries, it was believed that meditation is practised by yogis dressed in saffron robes sitting under a tree with closed eyes for attaining pure awareness or enlightenment until recently when the techniques of meditation were undertaken for scientific studies. Since then, the popularity of meditation is increasing as more people realize its benefits.
Meditation is a process of focused training of the mind and thoughts to achieve the desired goals. Training the mind to achieve the desired goal is an essential trait to be cultivated by sportsmen. The mind needs to cope with physically challenging and mentally demanding situations. It is only a sound, controlled mind that can make the task easy and pave the path to success.
Athletes undergo enormous physical and mental stress, which physiologically contributes to the release of inflammation-promoting chemicals called cytokines. The cytokines cause disturbed sleep, anxiety, depression, fatigue and hazy thinking negatively impacting their performance. Meditation calms the mind and reduces stress, leading to optimal performance.
Meditation prepares the mind to be relaxed yet alert. It lengthens attention span, improves concentration and, which build a positive mindset.
Athletes who unfailingly practise meditation quickly recover from sporting injuries, and have reduced pain perception. Meditation also boosts the immune system and checks illnesses that would otherwise hinder training and performance.
Meditation strengthens the mind to overcome weaknesses in performance by creating a sense of self-awareness. It armours the mind with coping mechanisms to fight against all the odds by a secure mind-body connection.
Meditation is, therefore, the ultimate chance for athletes to reboot their mind and bring out the best in them.