How to deal with frustration?

How to deal with frustration?

Learning new moves requires a complex cooperation between the central nervous system and the motor-units in the muscles it controls. The player initially has to focus really hard on the correct execution but even then making mistakes is very common.

After repeatedly failed attempts, frustration start to surface.

Every player is unique and reacts differently where one player:

  • reaches his breaking point sooner than the other
  • needs a longer time to come back to rest
  • has his own manner to deal with frustration
  • has more difficulties to master a move while it is a piece of cake for another player, and visa versa
  • can cope with it better on one day compared to the next
  • might have an unrealistic expectation to master the drill or move in a certain time span
  • goes through a lesser period where his progression temporally levels off

A player only masters a move or drill after the procedure is permanently stored in long-term memory and the player doesn't have to think about it. Only then it becomes an automatism.

It is crucial for a player to realise that making mistakes is just part of the process and that one move is mastered sooner than the other.

From pleasure to frustration

The time between a player enjoying himself on one moment and kicking a ball away out of frustration on another moment can be surprisingly small.

Usually the frustration builds up in a relative short vicious cycle:

  • The player starts with excitement (and a certain expectation) to practising a new drill or move
  • During practice he/she makes mistakes but for the time being accepts it as part of the learning process
  • While time and failed attempts progresses, his/her patience is put to the test because the same mistake is made over and over again
  • When the learning process doesn't meet any longer the expectations the player had before he/she started it goes downhill very fast and the frustration submerges.
  • The player looses focus which only adds to the count of failed attempts
  • It starts to boil over and any chance to learn the new move or drill is now completely non-existing

The point where frustration is starting to surface should be avoided because the chance that the rest of the training will be a waste of time is getting higher.

As soon as a move or drill fails for a few attempts in a row, it has an impact on the concentration of the player. Keep a good eye on the reactions and body language. Every player reacts differently.