Today, there are many variables that make an athlete evolve within his discipline. We could speak of concentration, motivation, perseverance, dedication or commitment.
In this case, we will focus on a way to move forward quickly and efficiently through goal setting. Researchers and sports psychologists and coaches agree that setting short, medium, and long-term goals is totally effective in improving an athlete’s abilities and maintaining motivation.
The importance of setting goals
This strategy is not a new idea; because in other fields such as businesses or organizations, it has been used for many years. A clear example would be the achievement of incentives or rewards because a worker achieves certain goals for the company.
However, the use of systematic goal setting in athletic training has been implemented more recently and with excellent results.
There is a lot of research supporting the effectiveness of goal setting as a motivational technique and strategy that optimally improves performance.
Definition of the term “objective”
A goal or goal is defined as the achievement of an optimal level of performance in a specific task and within a predetermined time interval. From a sports perspective, this strategy alludes to accomplishing certain areas of a task that increase athletic performance such as improving a swimmer’s personal brand in the face of a championship.
When we talk about setting goals or targets, we mean designing a training plan focused on making small advances or steps, to achieve mastery of a particular skill. Outraged, the main advantage of this goal setting procedure, Does establishing tasks to master certain skills of a sport in a short period of time, mean that we are competing with ourselves and motivating ourselves to exceed our own marks or limits.
Some mechanisms of the motivation process implemented are:
- Focus attention on the important aspects of the task, Ignore external variables that may disrupt the activity.
- Launch the energy needed to achieve mastery skills trained.
- Activate other variables, Such as persistence in the face of error or failure to achieve this goal.
- Have a wide range of resources this allows the same athlete to get out of any situation in sports competition.
- The self-realization that is achieved, once you exceed the previously imposed goals.
Classification of goals
The objectives can be divided into different aspects. For example, given the period in which they are performed, we would speak of short, medium and long term goals.
Short term goals
the short-term goals or objectives, Must be completed within one week of training. For example, asking an athlete to lower their own personal best in 1 second throughout the training week.
the medium term objectives they should be done in a month or two. For example, for an athlete to be able to establish marks that allow him to participate in major events such as national or international championships.
Long term goals
the long term goals they are those that are established for an annual season. For example, for an athlete to compete with the best in some Olympics.
The importance of collective goals
There are objectives or goals that refer to the same athlete within a group or team. A team is a sum of individuals made available to the group. So, improving individual performance will lead to improving team performance.
The goals set for the athlete himself imply that he is better focused on what he needs to do at all times to achieve the end goals. Therefore, these are aspects that can be trained individually and will benefit the group. For example, the striker who is offered in each training session to score a certain number of goals.
However, there are aspects that can only be formed at the collective level. For example, the defensive mechanism of a rugby team must be perfectly coordinated for it to be effective in this way.
To summarize, when we talk about goals or objectives referring to teams, each individual must put all his abilities to improve individually and collectively, Must be both compatible.
Characteristics of objectives or goals
To set goals or objectives to achieve desired results, the following should be adhered to.
- The objectives to be achieved must have a certain threshold of difficulty, Assist the athlete’s abilities in a realistic manner.
- They must be concrete (For example, lower my grade by one second in two weeks), as it works better than general aspects. (I’ll do my best).
- They must be tangible characteristics, Which can be measured. (Score five goals in a practice match).
- Focus on the goals in positive terms; because focusing on success means focusing on success, rather than avoiding failure.
In short, the setting of goals or objectives in the training of any athlete helps in an important way to improve his own skills and, therefore, to progress, to overcome the limits that neither the individual himself does. was conscious of beating.