Some of the world’s best athletes reveal how their daily psychological approaches can help develop your own mental strength in the new podcast series Mind Set Win – that launched on January 19 – with hosts Cédric Dumont and Kate Courtney helping to lift the lid on how mental techniques used by top athletes, coaches and managers can unlock performance in day-to-day life.
In Episode Nine, American alpine skiing legend Lindsey Vonn reveals how determination helped her overcome adversity with one Olympic gold, two world titles, four World Cup overall trophies and 82 World Cup wins to her name with Marcus Kleveland, Mario Gómez, Courtney, Justine Dupont, Ben Stokes, Armand Duplantis, Stefanos Tsitsipas and Lucy Charles-Barclay also opening up in Season One episodes.
Not just content with hearing fascinating stories, Belgian Dumont and American Courtney also outline practical tips for listeners to take away into the real world.
– In Episode Nine, speed queen Vonn explains how she endured many significant injury setbacks that required all her resilience and mental strength to overcome with one technique that helped her was to refer back to her ‘why’ and what her purpose was for doing it in the first place.
– The 38-year-old then reveals, “Why do I want to do this? I want to go fast, I love pushing myself to the limit and throwing myself down a mountain at 85mph and seeing what happens. I’m not just going to ski to the bottom and see what place I get, I have to push myself to the limit.”
– Her favourite book is ‘Grit’ by Angela Duckworth and she describes how she was willing to work harder and longer than anyone else in order to achieve her goals. She adds, “It’s been a life of joy but also of sacrifice. I have bled many times to get to 82, and I would do it all over again.”
– Dumont explains why Vonn’s mentality to persevere and keep going until she succeeds is the quality that took her from “great” to “exceptional”.
– In Episode Eight, Kleveland shares how listening to music has helped him thrive when the pressure is really on. The 23-year-old reveals, “When I’m under pressure, I feel like I always do better.”
– Specialising in Slopestyle and Big Air, Kleveland is one of the most decorated riders of his generation with seven major gold medals and also one of the most progressive, landing some of the hardest tricks ever attempted and consistently pushing innovation in his sport. He adds, “Right now the level of snowboarding is insane. I’m always scared every single day. You just have to make yourself believe you can do anything.”
– Dumont also analyses Kleveland’s winning approach to handling pressure before providing a practical exercise around a personal routine to embrace these crucial moments with a positive mindset.
– In Episode Seven, Gómez talks about going from being everyone’s darling to being hated by fans the next and that by only accepting perfection is impossible and failure is as much a part of anyone’s success story as the moments of glory, was he able to silence the negativity.
– The 37-year-old German football striker reveals, “My career was up and down. I always had the natural feeling in me that the next chance would come. Even if you miss a chance, the next chance will be there.”
– Courtney – who leads the listeners through a mental exercise to help them – adds, “Failures are not final and are actually part of the process that gets you to your next chance to score.”
– In Episode Six, rider Courtney explains how she adopts a mantra to help her focus on each race. She reveals her ‘accept and commit’ mantra, “That persistent mindset of just day in and day out, day in, day out, day in, being dedicated to what it takes to make those incremental steps, I would say, has been my greatest strength in my career.”
– Dumont declares, “Just like other skills we focused on in this series, persistence needs to be cultivated. If you can find a way to nurture your persistence, it will feed the passion and driving force inside you. It will become the engine that pushes you. And will move you to higher limits.”
– In Episode Five, French surfer Dupont admits to feeling nerves while waiting for a big wave to hit. A technique she has learned to be more connected with her senses. She says, “I can feel the temperature of the water. I can taste the salty taste. I can see the colour of the wave and hear the birds. I am just focused on being in the moment.”
– Dumont adds, “By being aware of how we think about and talk to ourselves, we can start to understand ourselves better, and change our mental narratives. And this has a real physical impact, studies show that practising positive self-talk activates the reward centres in your brain.”
– In Episode Four, England cricket captain Stokes reveals how talking about his vulnerabilities has helped shape his career as a leader. He says, “I am what I am. I just be me. People will love me, people will hate me, but at least, I’m confident that I’m giving the best account of myself and not trying to live up to anybody’s expectations.”
– In Episode Three, Olympic pole vault champion and world record holder Duplantis outlines how he developed a growth mindset. He reveals, “There’s just an infinite amount of ways to just get better in every single little aspect of what I do. And if I can improve my mental strength just by these little amounts, then it causes huge differences.”
– In Episode Two, 2023 Australian Open finalist Tsitsipas describes how to find your flow state and perform at your best. He reveals, “Everything made sense. You’re not playing with your skill anymore, you’re playing with your soul.”
– In Episode One, England’s Ironman 70.3 world champion Charles Barclay reveals how she finds and maintains high levels of motivation. She says, “Having got injured at the beginning of the year, everyone said ‘she’s never gonna come back as good as she was…’ and, actually, all of that external noise… It just motivated me.”
– Californian co-host Courtney is perfect to talk on these issues after becoming the first American woman in almost two decades to win a cross-country (XCO) mountain bike World Championship title in 2018.
– The 2019 UCI MTB World Cup champion and Olympian is also a Stanford graduate with a Human Biology degree and a speaker and writer featured in the Washington Post and Wall Street Journal.
– BASE jumper and skydiver Dumont revealed: “Developing your mental attitude can be quite easy to understand, but very difficult to apply. Mind Set Win aims to help people gain the confidence and courage to take action. I believe everyone can get better at what they do.”
– Earlier in his long, successful career, the 50-year-old was so fascinated with how to improve his own resilience and mental strength that he completed a degree in High-Performance Psychology.
– He added: “We have a tendency to mystify high achievers and think they aren’t like us, but sometimes they also have self-doubt, hesitation, fear, stress, anxiety and lack self-confidence. They will take action, though, to get closer to their dreams, and that’s something we can learn.”
Listen to the new ‘Mind Set Win’ podcast HERE
Audio Interviews are available HERE