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03-25-2009, 12:24 PM
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Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 253
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Most people on here will tell you to have a short memory. They will say you cannot control the past and not to worry about what has already happened. These things are great, but someone in your situation (I was like that as well) cannot simply do this...PERIOD. We as humans are who we are...some people can block out recent memory, while others have to struggle with nervousness and fear of failure. The nervousness is going to be there! You cannot get rid of it. I had a bad experience when I was about 15, where I blew a two goal lead, giving up 3 goals in the last 90 seconds of a game, and we lost. For years, I had issues closing the deal, always letting my fear of losing take over. Finally, I figured out what works for me...acceptance and embrace. The clock starts getting towards maybe 2 or 3 minutes left, and I start getting that feeling in my stomach...the one that hinders your motor skills just enough to prevent you from making the big stop. It is then that I simply say to myself, "embrace the's going to come, and there's nothing I can do about it...allow yourself to be nervous, there's a LEGITIMATE reason that you feel this way! It's a big moment!" Once you've accepted and embraced the idea that you're going to be nervous, you can then ELEVATE your effort (not your game), trying harder to think about each reaction you take, which should at least overcome the motor skills inhibition that comes from being nervous so that your net result is that you're still playing at the same level you were before. You're nervous, but still making the necessary saves. Sometimes I will crouch a bit lower in my stance or lean a little bit more on the balls of my feet so that I'm even more ready than I was before. Sometimes I'll stretch and wave my arms between plays so that if a high shot comes, they are flexible and more prepared to knock the puck away even QUICKER than 5 minutes before that. I find that you have to play head games with yourself to find out what works best for you...but I must say that I am now a better goalie in the last 5 minutes that I am in the first five (I guess I have to work on that!).

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