Mind Over Sports

Posts Tagged ‘Philadelphia Eagles

These are the coaches who have great empathy for their players and interact with them in ways that help their players deal with their own personal problems and issues. Good examples are Kansas City Chiefs head coach Andy Reid who faced a personal tragedy in 2012 when his 29-year old son was found dead in his room at the Philadelphia Eagles training camp; New York Giants head coach Tom Coughlin whose 63-year old brother, John, who he was very close to, died after a freak accident in which he tripped getting out of a cab and hit his head on the ground; Pittsburgh Pirates manager Clint Hurdle who overcame his bout with alcoholism. All three of these coaches have been highly successful and all three are known to show great empathy for their athletes’ personal problems and issues, on and off the field of competition. When athletes know their coaches care about them as human beings first and then as athletic performers, they will play their hearts out for them.

In the world of sports there are many athletes who are dealing with depression but few are willing to step forward and acknowledge it.  When they do, and receive help, it can have a powerful positive effect not only on their performance in their sport but in their personal lives as well. A case in point is New York Giants’ Offensive Lineman Shawn Andrews, who was a Pro Bowl performer when he was with the Philadelphia Eagles but is now making a comeback with the Giants. According to USA Today: “Even as a starter at the University of Arkansas…Andrews could sense that all was not right with his world. ‘I could see some signs even before I went pro,’ he says, ‘I didn’t know what depression was. I just held a lot of things in. I didn’t know who to talk to because I’d felt I’d get a biased opinion. So I just kept everything to myself. If you fill up like a balloon, it’s going to bust – boom!’
According to Andrews he took anti-depressant medication for eight months. He said his first visit to a psychiatrist helped because the doctor encouraged him to unburden himself by telling him everything that was bothering him. ‘It was a relief, man. ‘I’ll never forget it.’ Andrews looks and insists that he feels like a new man….’When I can go full speed, look out,’ Andrews says laughing. ‘Look out!’”  Watch for Andrews to go full speed during the coming season!

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