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  • Writer's pictureSam Booth

ADD, ADHD & Sport Psychology

Hey guys, this week we will swiftly discuss my perspective on how sport psychology is useful to individuals with attention deficit hyperactivity dissorder (ADHD). Some skills and techniques used in sport psychology are not just about enhancing performance, they can serve a deeper purpose in aiding day-to-day lives of individuals diagnosed with either inattentive (formally known as ADD), hyperactive or combined ADHD. As an individual recently diagnosed with combination ADHD (only took 28 years), this post shoots close to home. When undergoing cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) you begin to try and understand how your brain functions negatively and positively and come up with creative ideas to keep it occupied with the addition of learnt coping skills.

IMPORTANT: If you feel you may fall into this category, please see a clinically certified psychiatrist before self diagnosing (although these skills will still help if you don't have ADHD).

So what is CBT? The initial practice of CBT follows on from psychotherapy sessions where the consultant begins to understand the behavioral outcomes behind negative thoughts. CBT is a form of positive psychology, where we begin to change negative thoughts and turn them into positive ones i.e., "I will never complete this task" to "alright, this task is achievable lets break it down into chunks." As individuals with ADHD are prone to increased levels of stress and anxiety (compared to non-ADHD individuals) the techniques used to change behavior take longer to have an effect and can sometimes seem more challenging. Goal setting, imagery, self-talk and relaxation are four very common practices of CBT which help an individual to overcome overwhelming levels of anxiety and stress to become more manageable.

I do feel I need to say that CBT will not fix ADHD, it simply allows the individual to learn ways of coping and living with the disorder that everyone negatively shuts down. ADHD are not bad for you; most professional athletes and business executives may fall into a category of ADHD. It keeps you going, it makes you meticulous, it pushes you towards perfection. You might just need the extra helping hand to understand it better and utilize it to fulfill your own potential. Sport psychology is wonderful in the sense that it allows you to learn new coping skills, talk through your anxieties and stress, while maintaining a healthy lifestyle. I practice sport psychology from a holistic and humanistic perspective - You are special, you are individual and you do deserve recognition for your efforts and achievements. Be positive, learn to acknowledge peoples achievements and praise them for it. Be the positive change within yourself and others around you.

Have a great weekend,


DISCLAIMER: I took Concerta XL 56ml for 3 months and I had the best sleep ever. You could not wake me up, even though I had new baby twin boys - I was out. However, I did not enjoy feeling less energetic or not myself. I stopped taking it and now concentrate my hyperactivity through regular exercise and practicing self-talk, relaxation and goal setting. Please note that this is from personal experience in taking Concerta, for some individuals medicine certainly helps. As mentioned above, if you believe you may have ADHD and need medical help, see a clinically certified psychiatrist to get the correct diagnosis to move forward.


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