Play Attention and the US Women’s Olympic Bobsled Team
Bill Tavares Head Coach – US Women’s Bobsled Team
“I am the head coach for the 2002 Gold metal team. Our achievements as a world power in bobsledding are 3 world championship metals, 2 silvers, a bronze, and a gold metal at the Olympics. We have won over 40 world cup metals. I have a successful team.”
“I became the women’s head coach in 1998, right after the ’98 games. I was offered the job by the executive director knowing that the women’s program was just starting up and they needed a coach. We looked at the program for the first time and at that point he showed us how it worked and peaked my interest. Truthfully I’m probably one of the hardest people to convince with new technology. I’m a skeptic about everything, if it ain’t broke don’t fix it. But with this program there is a lot of possibilities that I saw that could help the athletes. Not only the athletes, I think that in the future even helping the coaches focus on the task at hand. It’s something that we have been lacking in sports. So with this I brought this to the attention of the sports science people with the US Olympic Committee and then basically took this upon myself to implement it and try to get it implemented with the US Bobsled first and hopefully with the US Lush. They have come over and are interested in it now.”
“Normally it takes a athlete years to get them trained to focus properly to get use to riding in the sled being comfortable and to do the things I need them to do. The task at hand. With this, hopefully teaching them how to focus better will get them there a lot quicker. You know the possibilities are endless right now, the way I look at it. With all the things that I’ve seen and done with it with helping out athletes train faster, getting them to the levels that we need to have them at, for driving a bobsled or even riding in it, or getting the coaches to the level to coach at that level. I think there are a lot of good things in the future.”
Erin Pack Driver- US Women’s Bobsled Team
“Being in the zone. It’s different for a lot of athletes especially in different sports. For myself being in the zone means I’m focused on the task at hand. A lot of times it’s every difficult to get into it with a lot of things that are going on outside. With Play Attention I was able to stay relaxed and focused on the bobsled run. Working with Play Attention, it was my first time with any kind of experience like this. It showed me how I was able to focus on the bobsled run in particular. It showed me when I stopped concentrating on it and when I would refocus and how long it would take to do that. Because logically I was able to relax a little bit better, and I noticed I wasn’t uptight, I wasn’t clinching my fists or anything and my body was a lot more relaxed. The fact of concentrating really helped me to relax actually because I wasn’t focused on everything else that was going on around me. And as soon as I was just focused on that one thing I was able to relax more. I think with the game or Play Attention it will help your focus on when something happens like where you trip or if you miss a curve, if you dive in too long or too late or something like that. It will help you to refocus and to work on what’s happening next instead of getting stuck on what ever happen before. I think that this could be something very useful defiantly in the future where myself and other athletes just because I was able to stay relaxed and calm. Where as when you’re out there and these 30,000 people are cheering you on it’s a little different. I defiantly think that using the Play Attention game would help my focus a lot as I train for this year and the years upcoming. I would love to incorporate it into a lot of my training. I think it would help as I learn to become a driver.”
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