6 Tips for Handling Pre-Race Anxiety with Michael Chadwick

For 5x World Championship Medalist Michael Chadwick, high pressure circumstance is often the name of the game. However, like so many athletes, he is certainly no stranger to anxiety, especially before a big meet.

So how does he shake the stress prior to hitting the starting block? Read on for Chaddy’s tried and true methods for managing pre-race nerves.

Preparation Is Key

First and foremost, Michael stresses the importance of proper prep. Identifying how anxiety manifests for you prior to a race is a great way to help you learn how to manage it. Whether it’s a nervous stomach or a need to get quiet, once you know what it feels like to be under pressure, you can explore how to best help yourself. In turn, this awareness of self can promote some serious confidence.

Get Out Of The Pool…Mentally

For Michael, taking himself out of the sport when he is not actively swimming is essential. To maintain balance he allots himself fifteen minutes a day to think about swimming when he is not training. Otherwise, he focuses on being present for his friends and family.

See It To Believe It

Michael suggests using visualization to help you create the swim you want to perform. Imagining yourself moving through your race will not only provide you with confidence, but also the underlying knowledge that you can in fact achieve your goal.

Trust In Your Support System

Sometimes it can be hard to recognize when stress is getting the best of you. During these times it’s essential to rely on the people you trust. Having someone to keep you accountable, whether it be friends, parents, coaches or in Michael’s case, an awesome wife, is a great way for ensuring you stay on track.

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Hangin with the boys #teamTYR

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Put Down Your Phone

Comparison is a slippery slope, especially when you are gearing up to perform. For that reason, Chadwick recommends staying away from your phone, especially social media, prior to a meet.

Grab Your Oils

Before heading to bed after a long day of training or in preparation for a big race, Chaddy diffuses a combination of his favorite oils to help him relax. In the evenings he reaches for lavender and copaiba. Then after waking he’ll switch over to an energizing wild orange.

Got some great tips of your own? Let us know on Instagram by tagging #TeamTYR in all of your training and race day posts!