How to use rituals for better performance

Do you have any rituals or routines when it comes to exercises, sports or work?

If the answer is NO, then you should think twice.


Being good at movements and any skills, requires certain parts of your brain and muscles to fire in the right sequence, with a specific intensity.

Top performers know this and use rituals to prime their nervous system for desired results.

If you have ever watched tennis, basketball, golf or any sport that requires a precision skill, you’ll notice that most of the top players will have a set of specific rituals or routines they take before a set shot.

Rafael Nadal picks his undies before each serve, Steph Curry distinctly chews

rituals
Wizards v/s Warriors 03/02/11

one half of his mouth guard before a foul shot, Michael Phelps swings his arms exactly 3x before jumping on the diving blocks, etc.

Now there are elements of superstition and OCD when it comes to rituals like this but there is one thing that is powerful for success and that is the priming of the nervous system through neural association.

Doing these specific actions repeatedly before a set task or skill places your body in an associated mental state. Similar to Pavlov’s dog

Who would’ve thought picking your undies was the answer to all your questions 😉

Neural association isn’t just linked to actions, it can be triggered by location, smells, sights and anything that can be perceived with our mind.

For example, our bedrooms should only be the place for sleep and activities the promote a better night’s sleep. If we pick up bad habits of using our phone, doing work on our laptop watching TV, then our nervous system will reflect that in our physiology.

Using a phone or a laptop that omits a certain spectrum of light, gives our nervous system stimulation that it is daytime and will reduce the amount of melatonin and increase other sympathetic dominant hormones. Which will make it harder to fall asleep and have an overall good quality of sleep.

This is just one example of our nervous system can be manipulated by habits and rituals in our daily life. There are countless ways we can affect outcomes by ingraining beneficial habits and routines.

Finding something that works for you, can be repeated and alters your physiology in a favourable way is a powerful tool in your toolkit for fitness and health.

Don’t feel stupid… If it works then use it!

Wearing the same set of smelly socks, playing with your hair, repeating phases and anything that puts you in a prime state is gold in my books.

Embrace the crazy.

So, when you have your next set or squats or deadlifts. Think about developing a ritual of your very own, to enhance your outcomes.

Comment below and let me know what crazy habits and routines you use.

If you would like to know my habits and routines that I use for myself and clients for better lifting performance. Submit email below and you can down load my top 5 tips.

Stay Crazy,

Coach Adam

P.s. See my latest YouTube clip below. Cornball comedy and bad acting.

See related article here 

Leave a comment or question