WALLA WALLA, Wash. -- Graham Betchart, a licensed sports psychologist and mental coaching expert, met with the Whitman College men’s basketball team earlier this month to talk about the mental side of sports.

     Graham Betchart

Betchart’s expertise gave the team a whole lot to think about and implement into their individual game plans. Betchart will return in November as well as later in the season to follow up on the progress of the team. 

Graham brought a wealth of wisdom to campus on Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 17-18, as he worked with members of the men’s basketball team on understanding how to maximize performance both on and off the basketball court.

Much of the first session focused on how sports is nothing more than a series of connected problems, many of which can be solved. The key, according to Betchart, is to be present in the moment as things are happening without dwelling on the past or worrying about the future. By focusing on what each player can control, as opposed to problems outside of their control, players become process oriented and not driven simply by a result. In this way, player are free to go out and give maximum effort, while understanding how much of sports simply falls outside his control.

Betchart’s sessions with the team impacted the players significantly and gave them a new set of mental tools to use in their approach to sports and life. The Whitman coaching staff hopes to see mental progress from the players as they face the tough challenges that a college season provides.

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CONTACT: Dave Holden
Sports Information Director
Whitman College, Walla Walla, Wash.
509 527-5902; holden@whitman.edu