47 athletes training for Cirque du Soleil were studied:
… injury, emotional exhaustion, self-efficacy and fatigue were associated with an increase in injury risk (risk ratios between 1.8 and 2.8), but Conflicts/Pressure was not (risk ratio=0.8). Of the several specific psychological aspects that are considered risk factors for injury, low self-efficacy had the strongest relationship. …
British Journal of Sports Medicine – Psychological predictors of injuries in circus artists: an exploratory study
What’s “low self-efficacy“, the factor that correlated highest with injury?
GRETCHEN REYNOLDS in the New York Times explains:
Hoping to discern what traits separated the injury-prone from the impervious, Dr. Hallé and colleagues from McGill University in Montreal compared data from the athletes’ psychological questionnaires with their medical charts. What they found was that a person’s level of confidence could significantly affect his or her risk of sustaining an injury. …
Lesson for coaches = coach for confidence. That means more successful progressions, more repetition and less spotting.
“Watch someone who is really good” at a task, whether it’s a twisting somersault from a trapeze platform or a 5K road race, and “notice each step that they take.”
… Every activity involves a series of discrete, manageable skills that you can practice individually, she said. “Succeeding at a portion of the task will show you that you have the capacity to succeed at the rest.” …
(via Stacy Clark)