MENTAL TRAINING FOR IMPROVING WINDMILL ROUNDS
Mental training is essential for every top sportsman and there is practically no Olympian winner and world champion in the sports field who does not owe part of his success to his mental coach.
If you want to be a champion, you want to win every race in your mind one hundred times, before you win it in real life that last time. – Marty Liquouri (2011)
In Breaking, you often lose a battle only because you do not take your opponent serious or you are not being focused enough. Bboys and bgirls often manipulate themselves at competitions because of having fear and putting big pressure on themselves. If the pressure gets too big, the body can also get ill or injuries can appear more easily. Being aware of this fear is the first step in solving this problem.
In numerous studies, it has been scientifically proven that mental training releases the same effects in the body as real training. The mind makes no difference between visualized images and real images. The nerves and muscles are activated the same.
To investigate mental training in bboys and bgirls, a study concerning windmill training was conducted. 20 participants from different sports such as ballet, karate, skate boarding, etc. and with no previous experience in Breaking were recruited. The participants were divided into two groups and both groups received a special breaking training three times a week over a period of two months. Only one of the two groups also received a mental training once a week. After two months, the performance of the subjects was controlled by a professional evaluation group consisting of three experienced bboys.
METHODLOGY FOR WINDMILL TRAINING
The windmill training consisted in 15 minutes of proper warm-up, including exercises which activated and strengthened all muscle groups concerned. This was followed for one hour of specific preliminary practice for windmills. Then the windmill move was trained for 30 minutes. The training session was finished by 15 minutes of cool down including stretching exercises, video analysis and the mental training techniques in the mental training group only.
METHODICAL APPROACH OF MENTAL TECHNIQUES
After the training, the mental training participants were asked to take a relaxed position. A relaxation music was played. The participants were asked to concentrate on their breathing. Different breathing exercises were conducted varying with long and brief inhalation and expiration.
Then the participants were training their imagination. First they were asked to imagine different symbols with their mind’s eye and try to stay focused as long as possible. The symbols used were squares, triangles, circles and balls. Then they were asked to imagine the required freeze positions for windmills. Then every single posture was mentally imagined in the form of a guided suggestion.
EXAMPLE FOR SUGGESTION FOR WINDMILL CLOCKWISE
Your right elbow is placed near your hip bone supporting your stomach. Forehead and toes touch the ground. Legs go up about half a meter to the right and stay slightly straddled. Legs are now tightly tensed and stretched out. During the swing taking to the left, the left leg goes up and the right leg pulls down beneath it. Before the right leg forms a straight line with the body, press slightly upwards to slide over the shoulder on the back. The hand moves towards the shoulder while pressing and then moves to the left on the ground. As soon as you are on your back, your head immediately looks to the left, your right foot pulls upwards and you lift yourself back to the freeze position, from where you can push again due to the swing.
EVALUATION AND ASSESSMENT OF WINDMILLS
On the last day after the completed 40 hours of training, the participants had three attempts presenting the windmills. Three experienced bboys rated the subjects. Because the research was about whether or not they could achieve three rounds in three months, the evaluation of style and aesthetics was not given importance.
From the group without mental techniques, each of the 10 participants could perform one windmill, but only three people managed to perform the three required windmills. From the mental training group, each of 10 participants completed two windmill rounds. Five people even presented three or more rounds.
In summary, the study showed that the mental training group has been able to learn faster than the normal training group. Additionally, men were more suitable to perform windmills than women. The men had a better body tension, in contrast the women showed more stretched leg muscles. This leads to the conclusion that body tension is one of the most important parts in doing windmills.
- Bboy since 2005
- Sports scientist, trainer, teacher, healing therapist
- Homepage: alexanderkrakolinig.com
- Facebook: Alexander Krake Krakolinig
In the past 12 years, Alexander Krakolinig aka Bboy Krake has been dealing with a lot of mental training techniques, hypnosis, and many possibilities concerning mind training. He has been a competitive athlete himself (triathlon, decathlon) for a long time. During his sports science studies, he practiced many other sports and learned that in professional, competitive sports mental strength is inevitable.
In his diploma thesis as a sports scientist he wrote about how to increase windmills by mental training. He trained two groups with 10 participants each, one with and one without mental training. The requirement was to be able to do three windmills after a two months training. In summary, the group with mental training reached 40 rounds of windmills in total compared to the group without mental training who only managed to do 20 rounds. After 10 minutes of mental training, one visually good trained participant could improve his windmill rounds from 1 to 3 rounds.
Alexander also traveled to Mexico and trained three bgirls for 45 minutes including 15 minutes of mental training. All three bgirls doubled their amount of windmill rounds.
Your mind connected to emotions creates your reality. -Alexander Krakolinig