Why did you wake up this morning? For an appointment, to go to work, to get your haircut? Everything we do in life has a reason or a why.  Going from day to day we all set ourselves into a routine and the “whys” of our lives seem to disappear into the shadows. For athletes, our lost “whys” can be used as motivators instead of discouragement or fear.

Why do you pole/aerial? Everyone has their own reason and each to their own.  Most commonly; however, it’s because we all have a passion for the sport.  We pole because we love it.  For some people being at the studio is enough, and for others being competitive at national competitions is their driving force.  Going in for practices can get old really quickly especially going in alone.  On the days when sleeping in or watching Netflix sounds better, go back and ask yourself why? Why should you get up and practice? Getting up and practicing gives you more training time, which will lead to better performance, which will increase your chances to achieve your end goal.  We can’t think about how we feel now.  We have to think about the future.  If you skip out or don’t feel like training, think about the benefits of not accomplishing the task at hand.  How is staying home or missing class making you better? What successful person have you ever heard say, “I skipped out and hardly ever practiced”?

“Why” cannot only be used as a motivator for training, but also for competing or performing.  Everyone experiences fear in some way or at some point of their lives.  For aerialists, it is many times before competing at competitions or performing in the annual show.  The difference in performance is how you handle fear.  Recognizing you are scared is the first step.  Then, it is a matter of training yourself to use that fear to your advantage as motivation.  If you are scared you will mess up or miss a trick, how is that going to help you? It’s not!  It will only put negative thoughts and poor mental imagery into your head.  Here again, just like training, ask yourself why are you performing?  Is it to win? Is it to have fun? Is it to set a personal record?  You are there to (___fill in the blank____).  You have trained for this and ready for it. Use your fear.  Why are you doing this? Because YOU CAN.