Sample Session: Dan Cnossen (pt.1)

  1. Build the mindset that operating in the worst conditions is your chance to excel and beat everyone else. It’s an opportunity to rise above. Get comfortable executing in uncertain and unpredictable conditions.
  2. There will be challenges and setbacks, ask yourself these question: How will you forge ahead? What would you do if you were pushed to your absolute limit (in any capacity)? How would you react and how would you want to react?
  3. We learn the most about ourselves when we are pushed to our absolute limits.
  4. When in doubt or pushed to your limits, focus on the task at hand. Go back to your fundamentals.
  5. Three keys to resilience and performance: 1) Do what it takes to get through today – focus on tomorrow when you get there; 2) Give yourself perspective – focus on growth and do everything in your control right now to make your situation better; 3) Focus on what you have, not what you’re missing.
  6. You can’t control what happens to you in life, but you can control your response to it. Control your actions, attitude, and your response to any given situation.
  7. Train like it’s a race, and race like it’s training. (Train the way you want to perform and perform like it’s another day of training). In other words, amplify the meaningfulness of your practice, train deliberately and with purpose.
  8. You can’t ignore outside distractions, but you can control the impact and your response to them.
  9. Enjoy the journey of training, always look for ways to learn and make yourself a better player and teammate (on and off the ice).

Sample Session: Ed Byers

  1. Think about what you want in your life, does that vision line up with what you envisioned 5 years ago? The vision doesn’t change, but the path to get there might.
  2. Do you view what you’re currently doing as work or as a passion? If you want to achieve the highest level, there can never be a question of whether or not you’re committed to it. 
  3. Everything you do comes down to the team. Think: Team gear, your gear, yourself. 
  4. You are never more important than the mission or the team. 
  5. When the fog of war sets in, all you have is your training and your habits. 
  6. As a leader, sometimes you have to make decisions people won’t like. If you’ve been a good leader, your team will understand that you’re making tough decisions for the good of the team. 
  7. The ability to selflessly give and sacrifice at the highest level is what a team is all about. 
  8. When you’re facing adversity or under pressure, you fall back on your principles and resort to your best level of training. 
  9. A great operator is: well balanced, well rounded, and grounded. 
  10. The most important quality of being a good teammate is Trust. Trust builds loyalty.

Sample Session: Dr. Allison Brager

  1. There is a high risk for sleep disorders in athletes and afternoon games tend to lead to higher injury risk. Knowing this can help you prioritize sleep and adjust to time zone changes from travel.
  2. Typically we hit our peaks of alertness from 10:00am – 1:00pm and 7pm – 10:00pm (good news for those evening games).
  3. Getting less than 5 hours of sleep can impact performance. Three days of less than 5 hours can cut HGH and Testosterone levels in half until you can get your full range of sleep.
  4. Lack of sleep can impact your vigilance and physiology, so getting sleep when you can and getting quality rest is important to maintain your game, improve recovery, and reduce risk of injury.
  5. Use caffeine and light to your advantage. Blue light will help you stay awake but it will also keep you awake. So, use light strategically and put your phone down at least an hour before bed.
  6. Napping can be a good tool for recovery and to protect yourself form bouts of sleep deprivation. Load up on sleep at the front end if you know you’re going to be lacking sleep.
  7. Hack jet lag in natural ways. Focus on your mobility to increase blood flow and use blue light to stay alert.
  8. When thinking about sleep focus on 3 important things: Habits, Mindset, and Environment. Create healthy habits and routines that help you get good, quality sleep. Prioritize sleep as a part of your performance plan. Make sure your sleep environment allows you to get optimal rest (cool, dark and quiet!).

Sample Session: Dan Cnossen (pt. 2)

  1. The range of talent is narrow when you’re performing at an elite level. It’s about separating yourself from the pack. And that’s where things like mental performance come into play. 
  2. When things get really hard, you have to block out the long term thoughts. You have to focus on the most important thing and prioritize based on that. Focus on the here and now. 
  3. There’s a difference between shooting not to miss and shooting to hit. Your perspective matters and will impact the way you perform. 
  4. Grit and resilience require work. Always. 
  5. There are things you can control and things you cannot control. You can control your work ethic, your dedication, your training habits. You can’t control the conditions, the refs, your competitors and how they prepare, your schedule. Don’t dwell on what you can’t control, that’s a waste of energy. 
  6. Everyone has the “big goal” but not everyone thinks about what they’re doing to separate themselves from the pack. 
  7. Set performance goals. Think of mid-term goals being your season/year long goals and short term goals being monthly or weekly goals. Focusing on the process will lead to results and outcomes you want to achieve. 
  8. Create your performance action plan by answering these questions: 1) what components do you see as key parts of your sport? 2) What factors do the best in the world at your sport have in each category? 3) What areas do you need to improve? 4) What can you do to improve in those areas? 5) What can the coaching staff do to support your efforts? 
  9. You are never out of the game. You can always do something to improve your fighting position. 
  10. You can be doing one of three things: gain ground, hold ground, or giving up ground. 

Sample Session: Dr. Pete Kadushin

  1. When you’re playing and competing at an elite level, you have to find your competitive edge. What will set you apart from the rest of the field? What’s your “one more”?
  2. Mental performance is about not only getting to the top, but also about how you sustain it. How do you maintain optimal performance over time?
  3. Find your zone of optimal performance. Everyone is different, but you have to discover where on the scale you fall when you feel like you’re performing at your best. Use performance journals and daily debriefs to help you figure out what you do on days when you’re playing well and “in the zone.”
  4. Breathing is the #1 way to get yourself into your optimal zone.
  5. If you have trouble finding your zone and “what right looks like,” make note of “what wrong feels like” and narrow it down from there. Part of the process of learning mental skills is discovering and becoming more aware of your zone of optimal performance.
  6. No plan ever survives first contact. You can plan and prepare down to the smallest detail, but when you hit the ice you have to be ready to adapt and trust your training.

Sample Session: Coleman Ruiz (pt. 2)

  1. When thinking about the team, particularly if a mission is failed or trust is lost, leaders blame themselves first – they take responsibility and drive open and honest conversation about what happened and how to fix it in the future.
  2. There is a difference between responsibility and fault. This is important to understand and debriefs help identify what happened in any given mission.
  3. Debriefing regularly helps ensure that trust is not lost even in failed missions.
  4. High performers are always pushing the edge, not always trying to be “right.” If you want to be average, you can  be “right” all the time and play tentatively. If you want to be great, you have to push the edge.
  5. If you’re not making mistakes, you’re not pushing the edge.
  6. It’s not about being the best player on the team, it’s about being the best player for the team.
  7. When you walk into the locker room for the first time, introduce yourself to the veterans and be the best teammate. Write down things you are focused on and debrief your performance at those things daily. Get input from your teammates/coaches/other people in the organization to see how you’re doing and then adjust those targets.

Sample Session: Coleman Ruiz (pt. 1)

  1.  The greatest teams have a systematic approach to maintaining tactical and technical skills. They spend an equal amount of time focusing on and thinking about the traits of high performance. It’s not just about your playing skills. There is more to greatness. 
  2. Ask yourself a few key questions to develop your leadership skills and build a better understanding of what it takes to be a good teammate: 
    – How do you think about preparation? Do you have a systematic way to prepare?
    – Do you understand and think about both outcome goals and performance or process goals? Not only if you’ll win or lose, but how you’ll feel and what you’ll do to get there.
    – What does it mean to “master your craft” to you? What categories of performance go into mastering a skill? What do you need to do to perform on the ice?
    – Do you have a systematic way to honestly assess yourself? Are you a student of the game, always trying to get better? Are you doing the work off the ice and out of the gym?
  3. Take your development and learning into your own hands. Take advantage of opportunities to learn that are presented to you. Develop your skills on your own.