Welcome to the UNT Center for Sport Psychology and Performance Excellence website. I appreciate you taking this opportunity to learn more about our Center and the work we do at the university and in the community. The Center for Sport Psychology is a national leader in (a) providing services to athletes, coaches and teams, (b) educating future sport psychologists as well as current coaches and sport administrators, (c) conducting research with exercisers and sport participants, and (d) working with the community, such as youth sport programs, to make sport a more enjoyable and meaningful experience. Simply put, our mission is to help you reach your performance goals, whatever they may be, and find passion in what you do.
Sports psychology seems like a vital component of getting athletes in the right mindset for optimal performance and well-being, and its benefits were first being realized in the early-to-mid 1900s. The history of sports psychology began with experiments and research of athlete's performance to provide enhanced mental edge to compliment physical ability.
Hypnosis is first and foremost a self-accepted journey away from the reality of the moment. Although the trance state is often referred to as if the patient is asleep, nothing could be further from the truth. The patient is fully awake at all times. The hypnotic subject is simply in a heightened, more receptive state of mind. This fact is proven with inductions called open-eye techniques, where the patient keeps his/her eyes open during the hypnotherapy. Full and deep trance is still achievable.
Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., also is exploring adding hypnotherapy for IBS patients. — Sumathi Reddy, WSJ, "A Surprise Medical Solution: Hypnosis," 7 May 2018 Click to Read Story A Surprise Medical Solution: Hypnosis Major hospitals are finding hypnotherapy can help sufferers of digestive conditions like heartburn, acid reflux and irritable bowel syndrome. — Sumathi Reddy, WSJ, "From Meditation to Medication: Headspace Has a Prescription Strategy," 25 June 2018 The case’s progression is traced on Friday night’s episode of ABC’s 20/20, which is exclusively previewed above, in a clip that explains how Marcell first decided to undergo hypnotherapy to aid law enforcement. — Adam Carlson, PEOPLE.com, "Years After a High School Senior Was Nearly Beaten to Death, Hypnosis Helped Her ID the Suspect," 15 June 2018 Most professionals who conduct hypnotherapy treatments are psychologists. — Sumathi Reddy, WSJ, "A Surprise Medical Solution: Hypnosis," 7 May 2018 Such feats helped lay the foundation for both hypnotherapy and the work of later famous disabled Americans such as Helen Keller. — Justin T. Clark, BostonGlobe.com, "Building Boston to shape morality," 14 Apr. 2018 Exercise, healthy eating, and stress-reduction techniques—like mindfulness, acupuncture, or hypnotherapy—may be helpful, as well. — Amanda Macmillan, Health.com, "12 Reasons You Might Have Cramps That Have Nothing to Do With Your Period," 27 Mar. 2018 This past Saturday, almost 100 women and a smattering of men showed up to hear inspirational speakers participate in a healing circle, discover their inner power and watch a demonstration on the healing capabilities of hypnotherapy. — Ruth Sowby Rands, latimes.com, "On the Town: Event emphasizes inspiration, empowerment and healing," 26 Mar. 2018 The guideline said that non-drug therapies such as acupuncture (as well as physical and massage therapies, biofeedback and hypnotherapy) should be considered as first-line treatments for acute pain. — Brie Zeltner, cleveland.com, "New Medicaid rule will further open acupuncture services to 108,000 Ohio patients with low back pain, migraines," 31 Dec. 2017
In order for a hypnotherapist to convey positive suggestions for change, the patient must be in a receptive state. The state is called trance and the method of achieving a trance is through induction. Induction techniques are many and varied and involve the therapist offering suggestions that the patient follows. The formerly common "your eyes are getting heavy" suggestion may still exist, but other more reliable and acceptable (by the patient) forms of induction have come to the forefront. The artful hypnotherapist is always aware of the present condition of the patient and uses this information to lead him/her down the path of induction. In its lighter stages, trance can be noted by the relaxation of muscles. At this point, hands can levitate when given the suggestion, and paresthesia, a feeling of numbness, can be induced. In a medium trance, a patient can be led to experience partial or complete amnesia , or failure to recall events of the induction after the fact. A deep trance opens the patient to powerful auditory, visual, or kinesthetic experiences. The phenomenon of time distortion is experienced most profoundly at this level. Patients may believe they have been away briefly, and may react with disbelief when told they were away much longer. Although some work can be done in lighter states of trance, the best circumstance for implementing change is when the patient reaches a deep trance state. At this level, the patient is focused inwardly and is more receptive to positive suggestions for change. This is also the point at which the therapist can invoke posthypnotic suggestions, or instructions given to the patient so he/she will perform some act or experience some particular sensation following awakening from the trance. For example, these suggestions, if accepted by the patient, can be formed to make foods taste bad, cigarettes taste bad, delay impulses, curb hunger, or eliminate pain. However, it should be noted that posthypnotic suggestions given to a person, which run counter to the person's value system or are not something they are likely to do under ordinary circumstances, will not be accepted and therefore not implemented.
Imagery (or motor imagery) can be defined as using multiple senses to create or recreate experiences in one's mind. Additionally, the more vivid images are, the more likely they are to be interpreted by the brain as identical to the actual event, which increases the effectiveness of mental practice with imagery. Good imagery, therefore, attempts to create as lifelike an image as possible through the use of multiple senses (e.g., sight, smell, kinesthetic), proper timing, perspective, and accurate portrayal of the task. Both anecdotal evidence from athletes and research findings suggest imagery is an effective tool to enhance performance and psychological states relevant to performance (e.g., confidence). This is a concept commonly used by coaches and athletes the day before an event.
The Federal Dictionary of Occupational Titles describes the job of the hypnotherapist: "Induces hypnotic state in client to increase motivation or alter behavior patterns: Consults with client to determine nature of problem. Prepares client to enter hypnotic state by explaining how hypnosis works and what client will experience. Tests subject to determine degree of physical and emotional suggestibility. Induces hypnotic state in client, using individualized methods and techniques of hypnosis based on interpretation of test results and analysis of client's problem. May train client in self-hypnosis conditioning. GOE: 10.02.02 STRENGTH: S GED: R4 M3 L4 SVP: 7 DLU: 77"