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How Neurofeedback Therapy Can Help Athletes Reach Peak Performance Levels

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Whether you are a professional athlete, or simply want to achieve your own personal best at your chosen sport, neurotherapy can help you reach new levels of performance, not just for a few fleeting moments, but more often, and for longer periods, than you have ever experienced before.

The Italian soccer team recently discovered this when they focused on retraining their thinking by using neurofeedback, along with guided imagery and other cognitive restructuring techniques, in a glassed-in room that became known as the "mind room." Their use of these training methods drew much media attention when they won the World Cup in 2006, largely, it is believed, due to neurofeedback therapy.

Neurofeedback was instrumental in helping these athletes to free themselves from the stress and anxiety produced by self-criticism and by replaying past failures. Many athletes use positive imagery and visualization to center their focus on the desired outcome. Still, it can be a struggle to keep the mind from going over mistakes, in effect reinforcing them, and possibly causing a repetition of the regretted performance.

Neurofeedback therapy goes even further than positive imagery. A device receives feedback from the athlete's brain waves and "rewards" the brain for optimal performance, and removes the reward when the brain wave readings show an increased stress level (which might be caused by pondering past failures).

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Dr. Clare Albright is a psychologist and neurofeedback practitioner in Orange County, CA. She is the author of, "Neurofeedback: Tranforming Your Life with Brain Biofeedback" Dr. Albright has been counseling in Orange County for over 26 years.

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