Does thinking get in the way of performance:
An opportunity rather than a problem?

Off
Metrifit Athlete Monitoring System

We have all heard athletes acknowledge overthinking in performance situations, whereby their actions change from the automatic nature of ‘see and do’ to, instead, awkward and poor timing. But, when thinking takes over a performer, this presents an opportunity rather than a problem.

Your Thinking is Not the Issue

The problem of overthinking is not a problem – it’s a cue and a solution. Thinking during performance is often an appropriate response that allows us to respond to the environment. Our brain is processing information as part of summarizing threats and non-threats, which is a primary role of the brain moment-to-moment. These moments are teaching us as performers that there is something to adjust, to learn, or to manage (Allen et al., 2013; Critchley et al., 2013; Porges, 2011).
Emotions are the biggest drivers of thinking and yet we often learn that thinking drives our emotions. This is a populous belief fueled by clichés and our unfortunate lack of literacy about the brain. We feel first, then think, so in moments when thinking arises in a disadvantageous way, it is a cue to observe and manage emotions. Thus, these moments act as cues about the neurophysiological processes with regard to breathing and heart rate (Homma & Masaoka, 2008; Wielgosz et al., 2016).

The Hijacking of Performance

Any performance can be hijacked or directed away from the desired course via emotion. Daniel Goleman coined the term ‘amygdala hijacking’ (1996) drawing on work of Joseph E. LeDoux (1995), and the term describes emotional responses that are immediate and overwhelming. This hijacking triggers some immediate changes like an increased heart rate, sweaty palms, more shallow/rapid breathing which causes us to intake more oxygen, and heightened ‘fight or flight response’ thinking (Goleman, 1996). This is an adaptive response as it reflects awareness and management of our evolutionary survival tools via the vagus nerve (Figure 1).

Vagus Nerve

 

Figure 1. The vagus nerve is the longest nerve of the autonomic nervous system, which influences the function of internal organs. ( Image taken from Could tweaking a nerve beat obesity? )

The vagus nerve is constantly sending updated sensory information about the state of the body’s organs “upstream” to your brain via nerves (Porges, 2011). In fact, 80-90% of the nerve fibers in the vagus nerve are dedicated to communicating the state of affairs (emotional, contextual internal and external) up to your brain. Visceral feelings and gut instincts are literally emotional intuitions transferred up to your brain via the vagus nerve. The vagus nerve assists the brain and our emotional understanding, and efficiently has information travel from the gut to the brain to modulate mood states (Allen et al., 2013; Critchley et al., 2013; Porges, 2011). Our emotional abilities are needed to perform, and we can deliberately redirect or manage performance via breathing and returning to a more efficient performance scenario of ‘see and do’ (Gevirtz, 2013; Ginsberg et al., 2015; Lehrer & Gevirtz, 2014).

Emotions Run the Show

Our understanding of emotion – not unlike the brain – has often been clouded by myth, misconceptions, and cultural confounds. Although many dedicated researchers have put forth consistent and exemplary efforts to uncover truths about emotional states and the brain (Clore & Huntsinger, 2007; Kassam et al., 2013; Tooby & Cosmides, 2004), many of us have little day-to-day working knowledge with regard to emotional and/or brain health. The heart as the stomach is connected to the brain via the vagus nerve along with 40,000 sensory neurons relaying information to the brain – leading researchers call the heart ‘the little brain.’ The heart coordinates emotions and communications with the brain and the sub-systems of the body in four ways, including:

  • nervous system connections from other systems (e.g., stomach, neuromuscular)
  • hormones produced in the heart
  • biomechanical information via blood pressure waves, and
  • energetic information from the electrical responses in the heart itself (Porges, 2011)

The Performing Brain

The neurologic power of the brain and the connective power of the vagus nerve make it possible to ‘train’ the heart from acting in a frenzied and disordered manner during stress and anger, and to instead work in an optimal manner to manage emotions and create lessons of calmness, controlled energy, and focus (Dupee et al., 2016; Lehrer & Gevirtz, 2014; Paul & Garg, 2012; Pusenjak et al., 2015). The implications are clear: better brain management leads to better control of information-processing both internally (within the body) and externally (from the environment). This management of the brain in concert with the heart and gut leads to better emotion regulation, treatment of clinical disorders, optimization of work/sport performance, and development of strategies to maximize life satisfaction and achievement are profound. The training offers the ability to recreate coherent signaling and feedback loops of management and control (Badra et al., 2001; Bernston et al., 1997; Brown et al., 1993; Eckberg, 2003; Eckberg et al., 1985; Paul & Garg, 2012; Song & Lehrer, 2003; Strack, 2003)

Diaphragmatic breathing is the one of the key components to managing the vagus nerve that communicates between the brain-heart-stomach ‘highway’ (Bianchi et al., 1995; Russell, 2014; Wang et al., 2010). This deep breathing is marked by expansion of the abdomen rather than the chest when breathing, which calms the vagus nerve and thus communicates ‘calming signals’ to the brain. This type of breathing is taught to high-level performers as a way to quickly recover, improve execution, and condition responses under stress (e.g., talented and gifted vocalists and musicians; law enforcement/military personnel – such as those who require tactical breathing during shooting; and, elite athletes) (e.g., see Blumenstein & Orbach, 2014; Liu et al., 2014; Thompson et al., 2015; Wells et al., 2012).

The mechanics of diaphragmatic breathing have evolved and built upon neuroplasticity over time (Speck et al., 2015). Breathing from the lower abdomen is a key advantage as blood flow is greater in the lower part of the lungs (due simply to gravity). There are blood flow differences throughout our core with as much as twice the blood/air flow from the top of our chest to the bottom of our core. This is why diaphragmatic breathing can quickly change our response bringing richer oxygenation of blood to the brain and changing the process of stress, anxiety, and fight or flight responses (Kreibig, 2010; Widdicombe & Sterling, 1970). The entire functional system benefits from a simple change in breath rate. Slow diaphragmatic breathing changes and modifies CNS-cerebral messaging effectively (Figure 2).

Performance Situation

Figure 2. The interaction of cognitive and emotional factors in the etiology of performance anxiety. The performance situation is interpreted in line with previous performance experience and cognitive factors, such as pressure to perform. Slow breathing intervention influences level of vagal tone, inhibiting immediate arousal and enhancing approach tendencies. These physiological factors feedback to cortical areas to influence further interpretation of the environment as either threatening or safe. Perceived safety determines behavior and interpretation of performance, which leads to either dysregulation and anxiety or successful regulation and coping behaviors. Level of anxious response determines future interpretations of performance environment. ( Wells et al., 2012; image adapted from: Matter Over Mind: A Randomised-Controlled Trial of Single-Session Biofeedback Training on Performance Anxiety and Heart Rate Variability in Musicians )

More specifically, this type of training can be further enhanced via biofeedback or heart rate variability biofeedback (HRVB) technology (Dupee et al., 2016; Lehrer & Gevirtz, 2014; Paul & Garg, 2012; Pusenjak et al., 2015). Unique from HRV measurement, HRVB training capitalizes on objective data and observable reactions of the user, and helps to focus and accelerate the positive effect of breath rate. Even more importantly, HRVB technology provides instant reinforcement toward moment-to-moment improvements. This aspect is critical to learning engagement, correcting the course of brain patterns, and creating lasting change.

The HRVB training consists of participants looking at their heart rate data during slow breathing, whereby they strive to maximize and create peaks and valleys. The heart rate pattern that occurs can be seen when heart rate increases during inhalation and decreases during exhalation. Patterns are measured using a noninvasive electrocardiogram (ECG/EKG) or a finger sensor that measures the blood volume pulse (BVP). The training focuses breathing at the pace of 4-7 breaths per minute. During slow breathing, heart rate and breathing rhythms synchronize – i.e., in a way that produces management of autonomic system response. The slow breathing pace which varies in individuals (for most, this is between 5.5 – 6 breaths per minute) can be determined using HRVB tracking tools. Over time, slow breathing exercises produce flexibility in the autonomic nervous system and mounting evidence points to the efficacy of HRVB for autonomically-mediated disorders and for stress, anxiety, depression, chronic pain, hypertension, and multiple performance aspects (related to energy management, movement/coordination, timing, decision-making, cardio/respiratory abilities, and VO2 max) (Choudhary et al., 2016; Dupee et al., 2016; Paul & Garg, 2012; Lehrer & Gevirtz, 2014; Pusenjak et al., 2015).

In summary, we can utilize deliberate action to redirect or manage performance via breath and return to the more efficient performance scenario of ‘see and do’. Thus, when returning to our initial question, “does thinking get in the way of performance?”, we can confidently affirm that ‘thinking’ presents an opportunity once we understand the interplay between our thoughts and emotions vis-à-vis our brains.

Please share this post so others may benefit.

The Brain Always Wins
Dr John P Sullivan is a Sport Scientist and Clinical Sport Psychologist with over twenty years of clinical and scholarly experience. He currently holds appointments within the National Football League (NFL), the English Premier League (EPL), the NCAA (Providence College, University of Rhode Island, Brown University), and the Military in the U.S. Dr. Sullivan is also a visiting scholar and applied sport scientist at the Queensland Academy of Sport and Queensland University of Technology in Brisbane, Australia. He is a frequent contributor writing on sport science and sports medicine and his latest efforts have focused on a series of books which distills the latest performance psychology, cognitive science, and neuroscience, related to optimal brain performance and health entitled The Brain Always Wins. Find out more about brain health and human performance in the book, The Brain Always Wins, available now on Amazon. Listen to the latest The Brain Always Wins podcasts and follow Dr. Sullivan on Twitter @BrainAlwaysWins

About Metrifit

Metrifit is an athlete monitoring system that gathers subjective and objective information from both coaches and athletes to drive behavior modification and improvement through insights modeled on descriptive and predictive analytics. It sounds complicated but Metrifit prides itself on its simple intuitive interface and advocates a simple effective approach that doesn’t overwhelm the athlete or the coaching/staff member. It has received high praise for its intuitive interface and it allows monitoring to be scaled for all levels of athletes and teams. Recent research by Anna Saw (Deakin University, Australia) has shown that use of Metrifit is associated with increased athlete sporting self-confidence. Metrifit is ‘athlete-centric’ helping to develop self-awareness, encourage creative thinking and emotional intelligence as well as developing ownership and responsibility within the athlete for their own success.

To find out more information please visit Metrifit Overview or contact us at

"The holistic approach of medical, physical, emotional and even tech/tactical; bringing together what we need to monitor and evaluate our University players. “If you can’t measure it – it doesn’t exist.” I know we were the first Canadian University to use the program and I know many more will be asking for it in the future! I highly recommend Metrifit."

Tino Fusco, B.Sc. ChPC

Head Coach, Women's Soccer, Mount Royal University (Canada)

Metrifit Athlete Monitoring System
2017-06-12T14:25:37+00:00

Tino Fusco, B.Sc. ChPC

Head Coach, Women's Soccer, Mount Royal University (Canada)

"The holistic approach of medical, physical, emotional and even tech/tactical; bringing together what we need to monitor and evaluate our University players. “If you can’t measure it – it doesn’t exist.” I know we were the first Canadian University to use the program and I know many more will be asking for it in the future! I highly recommend Metrifit."
"While working with the Clare Senior Hurling team (2012-2014), Horse Sport Ireland (U25 European Eventing Champions) and currently with the Limerick Senior Hurling Team, Metrifit provides our team with critical information across a number of essential aspects of elite athletic performance. You don’t really know how your players are responding to training stimuli unless you have daily data and Metrifit provides and easy to use and highly effective means of finding this critical information."

Joe O’Connor

NISUS Fitness, S&C Coach Clare Senior Hurling, Horse Sport Ireland and Limerick Senior Hurling

Metrifit Athlete Monitoring System
2017-06-12T13:55:49+00:00

Joe O’Connor

NISUS Fitness, S&C Coach Clare Senior Hurling, Horse Sport Ireland and Limerick Senior Hurling

"While working with the Clare Senior Hurling team (2012-2014), Horse Sport Ireland (U25 European Eventing Champions) and currently with the Limerick Senior Hurling Team, Metrifit provides our team with critical information across a number of essential aspects of elite athletic performance. You don’t really know how your players are responding to training stimuli unless you have daily data and Metrifit provides and easy to use and highly effective means of finding this critical information."
"As a school that cannot spend large amounts of money on athlete monitoring, Metrifit has provided us with a great tool for monitoring stress and athlete readiness at a great rate. Being athlete driven, we're able to get buy-in from the athlete, and drive individual or team wide conversations regarding lifestyle and performance education in the direction needed. Seeing acute and chronic stress on a real-time basis has greatly improved the way we schedule workouts and arrange travel during the season."

Derek Bol
Strength & Conditioning Coach, Valparaiso University
Metrifit Athlete Monitoring System
2017-06-20T22:26:45+00:00
Derek Bol
Strength & Conditioning Coach, Valparaiso University
"As a school that cannot spend large amounts of money on athlete monitoring, Metrifit has provided us with a great tool for monitoring stress and athlete readiness at a great rate. Being athlete driven, we're able to get buy-in from the athlete, and drive individual or team wide conversations regarding lifestyle and performance education in the direction needed. Seeing acute and chronic stress on a real-time basis has greatly improved the way we schedule workouts and arrange travel during the season."
"We have been using Metrifit for the past season at Cornish Pirates. It has been greatly beneficial for us to have our wellness and load management data on one easy to access system. We have found this invaluable over the past season whereby Coaches, Physios and Strength and conditioning coaches can monitor both the psychological and physiological load of our athletes on a daily basis."

Paul Cremin

Head Physiotherapist, Cornish Pirates Rugby Club

Metrifit Athlete Monitoring System
2017-06-16T15:06:04+00:00

Paul Cremin

Head Physiotherapist, Cornish Pirates Rugby Club

"We have been using Metrifit for the past season at Cornish Pirates. It has been greatly beneficial for us to have our wellness and load management data on one easy to access system. We have found this invaluable over the past season whereby Coaches, Physios and Strength and conditioning coaches can monitor both the psychological and physiological load of our athletes on a daily basis."
"Metrifit is an amazingly easy-to-use yet comprehensive monitoring tool for training and recovery! The elite athletes we work with are able track and monitor their situations and states daily, in order to maximize their performance loads and recovery practices. This also helps our coaches customize the training programs ‎more effectively. I'd recommend this for any serious team / athlete or coach in wanting to bring out the very best in their long-term performances! "

Edgar K. Tham

Founder and Chief Sport & Performance Psychologist, SportPsych Consulting (Singapore, Indonesia, Philippines)

Metrifit Athlete Monitoring System
2017-06-12T18:03:35+00:00

Edgar K. Tham

Founder and Chief Sport & Performance Psychologist, SportPsych Consulting (Singapore, Indonesia, Philippines)

"Metrifit is an amazingly easy-to-use yet comprehensive monitoring tool for training and recovery! The elite athletes we work with are able track and monitor their situations and states daily, in order to maximize their performance loads and recovery practices. This also helps our coaches customize the training programs ‎more effectively. I'd recommend this for any serious team / athlete or coach in wanting to bring out the very best in their long-term performances! "
"Metrifit has enabled us to bring to life the complexiities associated with managing the academic, pastoral and sporting demands of pupils aged 13 - 18 in a UK day and boarding school environment It has provided another bridge between coaches and sports pupis, giving pupils a space to provide honest self reflection on wellbeing and providing coaches a head start on appropriate freshness and fatigue balance across the school week."

Graham Williams

Athletic Development Coach, MSc ASCC
Millfield School, UK

Metrifit Athlete Monitoring System
2017-06-19T14:14:37+00:00

Graham Williams

Athletic Development Coach, MSc ASCC
Millfield School, UK

"Metrifit has enabled us to bring to life the complexiities associated with managing the academic, pastoral and sporting demands of pupils aged 13 - 18 in a UK day and boarding school environment It has provided another bridge between coaches and sports pupis, giving pupils a space to provide honest self reflection on wellbeing and providing coaches a head start on appropriate freshness and fatigue balance across the school week."
"When our players have been only training with the national team Metrifit allows me to liaise very closely with our conditioning coaches to manage load and intensity of training during training camps. I recommend it to anyone who wants an easy to use monitoring system."

Dave Passmore

Head Coach, Irish Hockey

Metrifit Athlete Monitoring System
2017-06-15T12:51:46+00:00

Dave Passmore

Head Coach, Irish Hockey

"When our players have been only training with the national team Metrifit allows me to liaise very closely with our conditioning coaches to manage load and intensity of training during training camps. I recommend it to anyone who wants an easy to use monitoring system."
"Metrifit has been used to gain a more in-depth insight into our student-athlete’s progressive athletic development and balance relative to their particular sporting and training activities, academic studies and total load. Metrifit doesn’t just help with optimising our Sports Scholarship students’ athletic performance. It assists us in helping them get the balance right between their sporting activities and academic studies."

Richard Deuchrass

Lincoln University Athletic Performance Manager

Metrifit Athlete Monitoring System
2017-06-12T13:58:58+00:00

Richard Deuchrass

Lincoln University Athletic Performance Manager

"Metrifit has been used to gain a more in-depth insight into our student-athlete’s progressive athletic development and balance relative to their particular sporting and training activities, academic studies and total load. Metrifit doesn’t just help with optimising our Sports Scholarship students’ athletic performance. It assists us in helping them get the balance right between their sporting activities and academic studies."
"The success of young athletes using Metrifit was an interesting challenge in the Elite Soccer space… After six months of learning, creating habit with teenagers the project is a huge success…. 90% completion rate has allowed us deal with all the key KPI’s that are needed in their development. In our space with developing athletes…Metrifit is a godsend and is the most important tool in this space."

Niall O’Driscoll

Academy Directory, SJ.B (St. Joseph’s Bray ) Academy

Metrifit Athlete Monitoring System
2017-06-16T16:51:01+00:00

Niall O’Driscoll

Academy Directory, SJ.B (St. Joseph’s Bray ) Academy

"The success of young athletes using Metrifit was an interesting challenge in the Elite Soccer space… After six months of learning, creating habit with teenagers the project is a huge success…. 90% completion rate has allowed us deal with all the key KPI’s that are needed in their development. In our space with developing athletes…Metrifit is a godsend and is the most important tool in this space."
"Metrifit is an outstanding platform to track your athletes’ wellness. It’s simple to use, easy to implement and gives outstanding information on your athlete’s subjective wellness which can be used to assign training loads. I highly recommend Metrifit for any coach looking to begin implementing technology into their program"

Brijesh Patel

Quinnipiac University, Head Strength and Conditioning Coach

Metrifit Athlete Monitoring System
2017-06-12T17:58:50+00:00

Brijesh Patel

Quinnipiac University, Head Strength and Conditioning Coach

"Metrifit is an outstanding platform to track your athletes’ wellness. It’s simple to use, easy to implement and gives outstanding information on your athlete’s subjective wellness which can be used to assign training loads. I highly recommend Metrifit for any coach looking to begin implementing technology into their program"
“I recently started using the Metrifit system and have found it to be a very supportive tool in keeping me focused and accountable to my processes & commitments and on track to reach my goals. I have found it enjoyable and think that it is beneficial to professional golfers and athletes in sport.”

Robert Karlsson, Professional Golfer

Metrifit Athlete Monitoring System
2019-03-04T20:48:39+00:00

Robert Karlsson, Professional Golfer

“I recently started using the Metrifit system and have found it to be a very supportive tool in keeping me focused and accountable to my processes & commitments and on track to reach my goals. I have found it enjoyable and think that it is beneficial to professional golfers and athletes in sport.”
"What’s more impressive is the ability to utilize the basics but at the same time have the capability to explore detailed and intricate correlative data points that helps us as coaches gain the most from our athletes. Metrifit has also served as an easy communications hub to ensure essential information is passed to the appropriate team. We are excited to what the future from Metrifit will bring."

Michael Torres

CEO, Shift Performance, Miami

Metrifit Athlete Monitoring System
2017-06-14T14:09:22+00:00

Michael Torres

CEO, Shift Performance, Miami

"What’s more impressive is the ability to utilize the basics but at the same time have the capability to explore detailed and intricate correlative data points that helps us as coaches gain the most from our athletes. Metrifit has also served as an easy communications hub to ensure essential information is passed to the appropriate team. We are excited to what the future from Metrifit will bring."
“Metrifit has become a multifactorial platform that has helped up us provide deeper context to the decisions that we make on a daily basis in regards to the physical development of our student-athletes. We have intimately been utilizing both the subjective wellness questionnaire along with player training load data to drive professional conversation and actionable tasks to enhance the sporting results and quality of life for our student-athletes with unparalleled success.”

Kevin Schultz
Associate Director of Strength & Conditioning
Director of Olympic Strength & Conditioning
University of Wisconsin

Metrifit Athlete Monitoring System
2017-06-20T12:12:33+00:00

Kevin Schultz
Associate Director of Strength & Conditioning
Director of Olympic Strength & Conditioning
University of Wisconsin

“Metrifit has become a multifactorial platform that has helped up us provide deeper context to the decisions that we make on a daily basis in regards to the physical development of our student-athletes. We have intimately been utilizing both the subjective wellness questionnaire along with player training load data to drive professional conversation and actionable tasks to enhance the sporting results and quality of life for our student-athletes with unparalleled success.”
"The visualisation of data allows for easy discussion between athletes, performance staff and medical teams and offers the potential to predict and avoid issues which could hamper performance. Over the year the data has proven instrumental in our critical decision making. Metrifit is a excellent monitoring tool however the unsung additional aspect is the fantastic and tireless customer support."

Robert Walsh
Strength Coach
Nederlandse Ski Vereniging (Netherlands Ski/Snowboard Team)
Metrifit Athlete Monitoring System
2017-07-25T14:10:08+00:00
Robert Walsh
Strength Coach
Nederlandse Ski Vereniging (Netherlands Ski/Snowboard Team)
"The visualisation of data allows for easy discussion between athletes, performance staff and medical teams and offers the potential to predict and avoid issues which could hamper performance. Over the year the data has proven instrumental in our critical decision making. Metrifit is a excellent monitoring tool however the unsung additional aspect is the fantastic and tireless customer support."
"The Metrifit RTP platform is an excellent tool to monitor, evaluate and make the right decisions for your athlete’s well being and performance. It enables coaches and athletes to track and sift through all the variables that underpin well being and performance on a day to day basis and to address an issue or potential issue in real time. A simply wonderful product."

Dr. Dale Richardson

CEO Achieve Total Performance Pty Ltd

Metrifit Athlete Monitoring System
2019-03-04T21:38:45+00:00

Dr. Dale Richardson

CEO Achieve Total Performance Pty Ltd

"The Metrifit RTP platform is an excellent tool to monitor, evaluate and make the right decisions for your athlete’s well being and performance. It enables coaches and athletes to track and sift through all the variables that underpin well being and performance on a day to day basis and to address an issue or potential issue in real time. A simply wonderful product."
"The ability to acutely monitor stress and recovery and make the correct adjustments was critical to our health and performance throughout the NCAA tournament. Metrifit has a very strong educational component. With the information we get, I am able to clearly understand the habits and behaviors of our athletes, and how they may be impacting performance."

Erik Helland

Director of Strength & Conditioning and Head Strength Coach Men’s basketball, University of Wisconsin

Metrifit Athlete Monitoring System
2017-06-12T11:42:14+00:00

Erik Helland

Director of Strength & Conditioning and Head Strength Coach Men’s basketball, University of Wisconsin

"The ability to acutely monitor stress and recovery and make the correct adjustments was critical to our health and performance throughout the NCAA tournament. Metrifit has a very strong educational component. With the information we get, I am able to clearly understand the habits and behaviors of our athletes, and how they may be impacting performance."
"I wanted to reach out to thank Metrifit for an extremely successful season. Our Regis University women’s side won the ultra-competitive RMAC with a 11-0-1 record. Our student-athletes reported in post-season interviews the positive use of Metrifit that enabled their own reflection about their bodies and also found value providing information to coaches for our strategic planning purposes. On more than one occasion, we recognized deviations from norms and were able to step-in with a quick chat to help a player get back on track or refer her to the proper support personnel for further assistance. Fantastic! "

J.B. Belzer
Head Coach, Women's Soccer at Regis University

Metrifit Athlete Monitoring System
2018-09-13T13:47:09+00:00

J.B. Belzer
Head Coach, Women's Soccer at Regis University

"I wanted to reach out to thank Metrifit for an extremely successful season. Our Regis University women’s side won the ultra-competitive RMAC with a 11-0-1 record. Our student-athletes reported in post-season interviews the positive use of Metrifit that enabled their own reflection about their bodies and also found value providing information to coaches for our strategic planning purposes. On more than one occasion, we recognized deviations from norms and were able to step-in with a quick chat to help a player get back on track or refer her to the proper support personnel for further assistance. Fantastic! "
"I've found Metrifit an invaluable resource. Not only to monitor daily wellness, readiness to train and training load within the squad, but also to monitor training load externally with additional external squads. Furthermore, Metrifit has acted as a key teaching tool, allowing young athletes associate good sleeping, eating and recovery habits to an improved sense of wellness and thus superior on-field performance."

Tommy Mooney

Strength and Conditioning Coach at DCU Sport and with Dublin Minor GAA

Metrifit Athlete Monitoring System
2017-06-14T13:31:14+00:00

Tommy Mooney

Strength and Conditioning Coach at DCU Sport and with Dublin Minor GAA

"I've found Metrifit an invaluable resource. Not only to monitor daily wellness, readiness to train and training load within the squad, but also to monitor training load externally with additional external squads. Furthermore, Metrifit has acted as a key teaching tool, allowing young athletes associate good sleeping, eating and recovery habits to an improved sense of wellness and thus superior on-field performance."
"Metrifit is an integral part of the set up within the senior and intermediate inter-county Camogie.  The data collected daily on the individual players is critical to the decision making of the backroom team including, managers, trainers, selectors, physiotherapist and indeed myself. As a nutritionist it allows me to monitor the quality of the player’s diet, energy levels, sleep pattern and overall wellbeing."

Yvonne Treacy

Nutritionist, Wexford Camogie

Metrifit Athlete Monitoring System
2017-06-13T16:38:55+00:00

Yvonne Treacy

Nutritionist, Wexford Camogie

"Metrifit is an integral part of the set up within the senior and intermediate inter-county Camogie.  The data collected daily on the individual players is critical to the decision making of the backroom team including, managers, trainers, selectors, physiotherapist and indeed myself. As a nutritionist it allows me to monitor the quality of the player’s diet, energy levels, sleep pattern and overall wellbeing."
"Metrifit provides immediate insight and feedback on the physical and mental states of the student-athletes.  It allows us to adjust practices and training sessions to accurately meet needs. We have been able to identify potential injury concerns, track current injury status and monitor return to play progress."

Kari Thompson

Head Volley Ball Coach, Southern Illinois University

Metrifit Athlete Monitoring System
2017-06-16T15:08:31+00:00

Kari Thompson

Head Volley Ball Coach, Southern Illinois University

"Metrifit provides immediate insight and feedback on the physical and mental states of the student-athletes.  It allows us to adjust practices and training sessions to accurately meet needs. We have been able to identify potential injury concerns, track current injury status and monitor return to play progress."
"The cutting edge technology of Metrifit enables Managers, Coaches and Players to use this innovative technology to gain these crucial percentage points over their opponents in a technologically advanced yet easy to use web-based platform. The data collated on a daily basis greatly informs Management Teams while the educational aspect of the system really appeals to modern day athletes who are constantly looking for that extra edge."

Cian O’Neill

Kildare Senior Football Manager

Metrifit Athlete Monitoring System
2017-06-14T13:24:03+00:00

Cian O’Neill

Kildare Senior Football Manager

"The cutting edge technology of Metrifit enables Managers, Coaches and Players to use this innovative technology to gain these crucial percentage points over their opponents in a technologically advanced yet easy to use web-based platform. The data collated on a daily basis greatly informs Management Teams while the educational aspect of the system really appeals to modern day athletes who are constantly looking for that extra edge."
"Metrifit has been hugely beneficial in supporting our coaches and back room staff to track and monitor our players training loads, performance and readiness to train. Having a one-stop shop for collating all relevant information across a holistic picture of the player allows us to help prevent burnout, injury and provide timely feedback and communication to all."

Eamonn Fitzmaurice

Kerry Senior Football, Manager

Metrifit Athlete Monitoring System
2017-06-12T14:01:46+00:00

Eamonn Fitzmaurice

Kerry Senior Football, Manager

"Metrifit has been hugely beneficial in supporting our coaches and back room staff to track and monitor our players training loads, performance and readiness to train. Having a one-stop shop for collating all relevant information across a holistic picture of the player allows us to help prevent burnout, injury and provide timely feedback and communication to all."
"Our coaches through Metrifit basically have an ‘X-ray’ vision into the habits and lifestyles and stressors their athletes have on a day to day basis, especially when they are not together. Thus the professional authentic relationships created through the casual conversations, reflection process and application provided is priceless."

Brian Clarke

Head Strength and Conditioning Co-ordinator,Noblesville High School

Metrifit Athlete Monitoring System
2017-06-12T14:21:17+00:00

Brian Clarke

Head Strength and Conditioning Co-ordinator,Noblesville High School

"Our coaches through Metrifit basically have an ‘X-ray’ vision into the habits and lifestyles and stressors their athletes have on a day to day basis, especially when they are not together. Thus the professional authentic relationships created through the casual conversations, reflection process and application provided is priceless."
"Metrifit has been instrumental in helping our international Managers, Coaches and Medical teams to identify players who require modifications in training loads or who are struggling with some aspect of their preparation for, or recovery from, training and matches.  One of the big strengths of this technology is that it allows our Managers and Medical teams to monitor players both during international competition and outside of these times."

Dan Horan

Head of Fitness for International Football/Fitness Coach Men's Senior Team
Football Association of Ireland

Metrifit Athlete Monitoring System
2017-06-16T15:11:55+00:00

Dan Horan

Head of Fitness for International Football/Fitness Coach Men's Senior Team
Football Association of Ireland

"Metrifit has been instrumental in helping our international Managers, Coaches and Medical teams to identify players who require modifications in training loads or who are struggling with some aspect of their preparation for, or recovery from, training and matches.  One of the big strengths of this technology is that it allows our Managers and Medical teams to monitor players both during international competition and outside of these times."
"Gaelic football is an intermittent high-intensity collision-based field sport requiring high levels of endurance, strength, power, agility, and speed as well as proficiency with gaelic-related skills. These components comprise the training modalities used at the elite level and the monitoring of such a vast range of modalities is central to peak performance. The athlete monitoring tool Metrifit allows us to do this and can keep us one step ahead of our competitors."

Jason McGahan

Sports Scientist, Kildare Football, PhD Sports Science Researcher

Metrifit Athlete Monitoring System
2017-06-12T14:23:50+00:00

Jason McGahan

Sports Scientist, Kildare Football, PhD Sports Science Researcher

"Gaelic football is an intermittent high-intensity collision-based field sport requiring high levels of endurance, strength, power, agility, and speed as well as proficiency with gaelic-related skills. These components comprise the training modalities used at the elite level and the monitoring of such a vast range of modalities is central to peak performance. The athlete monitoring tool Metrifit allows us to do this and can keep us one step ahead of our competitors."

References
Allen, M., Smallwood, J., Christensen, J., Gramm, D., Rasmussen, B., Gaden Jensen, C., Roepstorff, A., & Lutz, A. (2013). The balanced mind: The variability of task-unrelated thoughts predicts error-monitoring. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 7, 743.

Badra L. J., Cooke W. H., Hoag J. B., Crossman A. A., Kuusela T. A., Tahvanainen K. U., & Eckberg, D. L. (2001). Respiratory modulation of human autonomic rhythms. The American Journal of Physiology – Heart and Circulatory Physiology, 280, H2674–H2688.

Berntson G. G., Bigger J. T., Jr., Eckberg D. L., Grossman P., Kaufmann P. G., Malik M., Nagaraja, H. N., Porges, S. W., Saul, J. P., Stone, P. H., & van der Molen, M. W. (1997). Heart rate variability: Origins, methods, and interpretive caveats. Psychophysiology, 34, 623–648.

Bianchi, A. L., Denavit-Saubie, M., & Champagnat, J. (1995). Central control of breathing in mammals: neuronal circuitry, membrane properties, and neurotransmitters. Physiological Reviews, 75(1), 1-46.

Blumenstein, B., & Orbach, I. (2014). Biofeedback for sport and performance enhancement. Oxford University Press. DOI: 10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199935291.013.001

Brown T. E., Beightol L. A., Koh J., & Eckberg D. L. (1993). Important influence of respiration on human R-R interval power spectra is largely ignored. Journal of Applied Physiology, 75, 2310–2317.

Choudhary, R., Trivedi, V., & Choudhary, S. G. (2016). Effect of heart rate variability biofeedback training on the performance of track athlete. International Journal of Therapies and Rehabilitation Research, 5(4), 166-174.

Clore G., & Huntsinger, J. (2007). How emotions inform judgment and regulate thought. Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 11(9), 393–399.

Critchley, H. D., Eccles, J., & Garfinkel, S. N. (2013). Interaction between cognition, emotion, and the autonomic nervous system. Handbook of Clinical Neurology, 117, 59-77.

Dupee, M., Forneris, T., & Werthner, P. (2016). Perceived outcomes of a biofeedback and neurofeedback training intervention for optimal performance: Learning to enhance self-awareness and self-regulation with Olympic athletes. The Sport Psychologist, 30(4), 339-349.

Eckberg, D. L. (2003). The human respiratory gate. The Journal of Physiology, 548(Pt. 2), 339–352.

Eckberg, D. L., Nerhed, C., & Wallin, B. G. (1985). Respiratory modulation of muscle sympathetic and vagal cardiac outflow in man. The Journal of Physiology, 365, 181–196.

Gevirtz, R. (2013). The promise of heart rate variability biofeedback: Evidence-based applications. Biofeedback, 41, 110–120.

Ginsberg, J. P., Pietrabissa, G., Manzoni, G. M., & Castelnuovo, G. (2015). Treating the mind to improve the heart: The summon to cardiac psychology. Frontiers in Psychology, 6, 1101.

Goleman, D. (1996). Emotional intelligence. Why it can matter more than IQ. Learning, 24(6), 49-50.

Homma, I., & Masaoka, Y. (2008). Breathing rhythms and emotions. Experimental Physiology, 93(9), 1011-1021.

Kassam, K. S., Markey, A. R., Cherkassky, V. L., Loewenstein, G., & Just, M. A. (2013). Identifying emotions on the basis of neural activation. PLoS ONE, 8(6): e66032. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0066032

Kreibig, S. D. (2010). Autonomic nervous system activity in emotion: A review. Biological Psychology, 84(3), 394-421.

LeDoux J. E. (1995). Emotion: Clues from the brain. Annual Review of Psychology, 46, 209-235.

Lehrer, P. M., & Gevirtz, R. (2014). Heart rate variability biofeedback: How and why does it work? Frontiers in Psychology, 5, 756.

Liu, Q., Song, H., Du, Y., Cao, Z., Zhou, Y., Peng, F., Yang, L., & Luo, Y. (2014). Effect of deep-breath biofeedback on heart rate variability and blood pressure at high altitude. In Proceedings of the 13th International Conference on Man-Machine-Environment System Engineering (pp. 387-393). Springer Berlin Heidelberg.

Paul, M., & Garg, K. (2012). The effect of heart rate variability biofeedback on performance psychology of basketball players. Applied Psychophysiology and Biofeedback, 37(2), 131–144.

Porges, S. (2011). The Polyvagal Theory. New York: W. W. Norton & Company.

Pusenjak, N., Grad, A., Tusak, M., Leskovsek, M., & Schwarzlin, R. (2015). Can biofeedback training of psychophysiological responses enhance athletes’ sport performance? A practitioner’s perspective. The Physician and Sportsmedicine, 43(3), 287-299.

Russell, M. (2014). Diaphragmatic breathing and its effect on inhibitory control (Master’s thesis). Retrieved from UKnowledge, University of Kentucky). Theses and Dissertations-Psychology. Paper 53. http://uknowledge.uky.edu/psychology_etds/53

Speck, D. F., Dekin, M. S., Revelette, W. R., & Frazier, D. A. (2015). Respiratory control: Central and peripheral mechanisms. Lexington: The University Press of Kentucky. Retrieved February 9, 2017, from Project MUSE database.

Song, H. S., & Lehrer, P. M. (2003). The effects of specific respiratory rates on heart rate and heart rate variability. Applied Psychophysiology and Biofeedback, 28(1), 13–24.

Strack, B. W. (2003). Effect of heart rate variability (hrv) biofeedback on batting performance in baseball. Dissertation Abstracts International: Section B: The Sciences and Engineering, 64, 1540.

Thompson, A. G., Swain, D. P., Branch, J. D., Spina, R. J., & Grieco, C. R. (2015). Autonomic response to tactical pistol performance measured by heart rate variability. The Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research, 29(4), 926-933.

Tooby, J., & Cosmides, L. (2004). The evolutionary psychology of the emotions and their relationship to internal regulatory variables. In M. Lewis, J. M. Haviland-Jones, & L. F. Barrett (Eds.), Handbook of Emotions, 3rd Ed. (pp. 114-137). NY: Guilford Press.

Wang, S. Z., Li, S., Xu, X. Y., Lin, G. P., Shao, L., Zhao, Y., & Wang, T. H. (2010). Effect of slow abdominal breathing combined with biofeedback on blood pressure and heart rate variability in prehypertension. The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, 16(10), 1039-1045.

Wells, R., Outhred, T., Heathers, J. A., Quintana, D. S., & Kemp, A. H. (2012). Matter over mind: A randomised-controlled trial of single-session biofeedback training on performance anxiety and heart rate variability in musicians. PloS ONE, 7(10), e46597. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0046597

Widdicombe, J. G., & Sterling, G. M. (1970). The autonomic nervous system and breathing. Archives of Internal Medicine, 126(2), 311-329.

Wielgosz, J., Schuyler, B. S., Lutz, A., & Davidson, R. J. (2016). Long-term mindfulness training is associated with reliable differences in resting respiration rate. Scientific Reports, 6, 27533. Wielgosz, J., Schuyler, B. S., Lutz, A., & Davidson, R. J. (2016). Long-term mindfulness training is associated with reliable differences in resting respiration rate. Scientific Reports, 6, 27533. doi.org/10.1038/srep27533