Performance Coach: Teams Have To Assess Athletes "360"

Athletic success goes beyond fitness and physical ability, Darleen Santore says

After Hours With Amy Lawrence
July 11, 2019 - 9:49 am
Tiger Woods Pebble Beach

USA Today Images

Elite athletes focus on nutrition and training to improve their physical performance. But what about their mental health? As Peak Performance Coach Darleen Santore explains, that is a critical component of athletic success.

“If we’re trying to get the best out of our players and people, we have to start looking at the human more,” Santore said on After Hours with Amy Lawrence. “That human side of it is really the mental wellness side of it, the mental edge of a person, and also the emotional intelligence that goes with it. There’s so many facets. If we could start to pull out the human side of a person and actually see how they thrive, why they’re passionate, how they learn – we could start to identify more of what their strengths are.”

In other words, one’s 40-time or scoring average only tells part of the story.

“It can’t just be (about) the numbers,” Santore said. “We have to look at this human behavior side of a person. If we could actually foster some dialogue with them and give them resources and tools so they can be more effective as a person, they’re going to play better. We have to look at their mental wellness. We’re constantly looking at their performance, their stats, and they have to get stronger, they have to get faster. But what about the whole mental side of this?”

Santore said teams have to view and assess athletes “360.”

“It’s looking at them holistically,” she said. “Everyone is looking at the physical stats. I appreciate all the stats in sports. They definitely are helpful. But what about the emotional side of a person? What about how they’re feeling? What’s the mental wellness of a person? You don’t have to be in crisis to help someone. What if something is going on in their home? How is that going to play into when they show up on the court or the field or the ice? So you have to talk to them and see what’s going on in their whole world, not just when they’re (performing). You have to look at the person 360 because everything affects everything.”

Click below to listen to Santore’s interview in its entirety.