Getting in the right mindset
Visualize yourself on the ice
Focus on the performance in front of you
What you need and do not need to do before the competition:
Be prepared. Pack your skate bag with all of the appropriate items (skates, extra laces, hair clips, blade guards, music etc.) at least one night before your competition. When you don’t have to worry about forgetting something, it’s much easier to focus once you’re at the rink. The night before, make sure you have everything set out or packed.
Once everything is all packed, take a warm bath, and get dressed in your favourite, most comfortable pyjamas. Go to sleep a little earlier than usual, especially if you are skating in the morning. Set your alarm clock for around an hour to an hour and a half before you’ll have to leave the next day.
- Tights (non-ripped)
- Skates (cleaned and polished)
- Two copies of your music
- Spare laces (clean)
- Your schedule
- Guards and soakers
- A warm-up jacket and gloves
- Hairspray, a brush, clips, and all other hair items you’ll need
- A few snacks and water bottles
- Money to buy souvenirs, if wanted
- A favourite stuffed animal or item
- Homework you have if you are missing school
- Stopwatch to time yourself if you will have a time limit
- Camera, if wanted
- Anything else you want/need
Parents at a Competition Day
- Your role at a competition can be a major ingredient to your child’s performance.
- You are an important support system! Determining how and when you provide support is the challenge. Every child is different and has its own needs, which change over time. Their needs at a competition day may be affected by the level of competition being taken, demands of coaches, amount of free time, accreditation or access to your child, media presence and their own confidence in their ability.
- The most important thing to do before hand is to work out a pre-competition routine with your skater and coach.
- He or she should be allowed to determine where they want you to be while they dress, practice, stretch, wait to perform and perform. This is often best arrived at away from the competitive site by asking “what do you want from me at the rink”?
- Adhering to a routine gives a skater security and structure to a period of time that is totally unpredictable.
- Typically, an athlete may prefer to be alone, to walk through the programme but needs to know you are not too far away, just in case they want to talk.
- Multiple instructions, trying to psych them up or calm them down, sometimes only adds to the problem.
- The most important thing is that they feel confident and that they are at an excitation level they can handle.
- You can facilitate this by presenting a calm, confident front and letting them do their thing.
Often we express how we feel, more in the way we act and behave, than in what we say. If we are excited, tense, nervous, or anxious prior to a competition, the skater will pick up on this. They will feel our anxiety in spite of our constant reassurances. Overt parental anxiety only adds to the degree of difficulty of the task they have to undertake.
- Above all, ensure that your child feels loved and valued no matter how they skate.
Have fun! 😀