OTHER: Sport psychology books must-read list

Hello, and welcome the year 2020! Last year we have a series of books from different topics that are excellent for getting more knowledge about training, coaching and nutrition. Now, here’s the last part, sport psychology. This post is good for any runner, as we all sometimes struggle with lack of motivation, low self-esteem and nerves.

Some of the books are more science-based and used to university level and some are more “lighter” reading. This topic is wide and there are tons of excellent books, which makes this list quite difficult to make. So, again if I missed any good books here or you have read something, please leave a comment below and share it to others!

Booklist

  • David Epstein – Sports gene – inside the science of extraordinary athletic performance

Interesting book, not only about running but sports altogether. Are some genes more dominant than others? Are some athletes genetic freak, or just like regular people but training harder. Epstein goes through different beliefs, such as 10 000 hour-rule. The book contains a lot of inside information, but it’s easy to read because of its storytelling-like-ish style.

  • Jim Afremow – The champion’s mind – how great athletes think, train, and thrive

Good books for those, who get inspired by elite athletes. Great tips on how to step up the mental game, examples from elite athletes and practical training.

  • Rhonda Cohen – Sport Psychology: the basics

The science-based book which covers basic information about sports psychology, such as talent identification, mental toughness, risk-taking, stress management, mindfulness, gender issues, injuries and social media. Excellent book for athlete, coaches and those who are interested in sport psychology.

  • Ben Loeb – Next-level coaching: How to use sport psychology to educate, motivate and improve student-athlete performance

For coaches who are working with the student-athlete, and also athlete and other coaches. Every coach should know at least basic about psychology as every athlete are different and they behave, react and motivated differently. This book teaches how to recognise different motivation types and how to use them, developing emotional skills and much more.

  • Damon Burton & Thomas D. Raedeke – Sport Psychology for coaches

Like the previous book, this book is excellent for coaches, but not only for young athletes’ coaches. Give a lot of practical tips and examples of how to recognise different types of athletes.

  • Annie Vernon – Mind Games

Annie Vernon is a former British rower and Olympic medalist. She speaks about sports psychology from the athlete perspective, using her own examples but as well as others too. The book contains topics like performance under pressure, coping the nerves and building self-believe. What makes human psyche to push the mind and body to their limits.

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