Small things can make huge impact on athletes, says Diaz's sports psychologist

Published September 13, 2021, 7:58 PM

by Carlo Anolin

A renowned sports psychologist reminded the public, especially athletes, to be mindful of the smallest things to improve one’s mental health and focus.

Hidilyn Diaz (AFP)

No less than Dr. Karen Trinidad, the sports psychologist of Olympic gold medalist Hidilyn Diaz, did the same method in helping the weightlifting icon to persevere heading into the 2020 Tokyo Games.

“Very important that you start with the smallest things like for example, you start with habits and then it becomes a lifestyle,” said Trinidad, who is part of Diaz’s Team HD, during the #UnderTheArmour webinar over the weekend.

“In the case of Hidilyn, sometimes I ask her to do something for 21 days so that she develops habits. So small things, and from her thoughts because thoughts can lead to behavior and behaviors lead to action,” she added, noting that these small factors sometimes yield a bigger impact in the process.

This was the exact routine that Trinidad used to improve Diaz’s mental focus before she made history for the Philippines as the first athlete to capture a gold medal in the quadrennial meet.

As for Diaz’s current routine, training will always be inevitable while being paired with a cup of coffee in the morning and yoga sessions in between the hustle.

And not a day goes by that Diaz, who is known for her deep Catholic faith, won’t be praying and thanking God.

“Ngayon medyo mahirap ‘yong schedule ko. Medyo mahirap siguro pero ‘yong daily routine ko, nagkakape ako. Kailangan kong magkape, tapos pagkagising be thankful, tapos pagkatulog be thankful kay God (Right now I have a hectic schedule. It’s kind of difficult but my daily routine is not to miss a cup of coffee, and be thankful to God after I wake up and before I sleep),” said the 30-year-old Diaz.

“Kailangan nagte-training ako in a week. Kahit anong busy ‘yan. Kailangan kasi ‘yon ‘yong way para masabi kong ‘belong ako, heto ‘yong sports ko talaga.’ Ito ‘yong routine ko at kailangan kong gawin (I cannot miss training in a week. I really need to train at least once a week despite a busy schedule. That’s my way of saying that I belong to the sport and I needed to do this).”

Without a formal training camp yet, Diaz earlier has set sights to compete in the 2021 Weightlifting World Championship in Tashkent, Uzbekistan which will kick off in December.

”Yong pagiging hungry kasi it’s always back to the basic and [setting] the goals. Kailangan may long-term at short-term goals para may reasons bakit kailangang ko ‘tong gawin. And of course, I need to grow as an athlete (Being hungry means going back to the basic and setting the goals. I need both long-term and short-term goals to determine the reasons why I need to do. And of course, I also need to grow as an athlete),” added the Zamboanga native lifter.

READ: Hidilyn Diaz dismisses retirement talk

 
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