Eugénie’s hockey performance

Eugénie’s hockey performance with Mindstretch

Eugénie plays hockey at a high level. To take better control of her high energy use due to stress, she started monitoring with Mindstretch. We talked to her and her coach Koen Joosen of Sportpraktijk, who came up with the idea of guiding her using Mindstretch.

High mental load and low recovery

“I am a very stressed person”, Eugénie said and she has a very busy life as well. There are three trainings and one hockey match every week. Besides, she sometimes has additional trainings for her muscles and/or physical condition at Sportpraktijk. But not only the hockey makes her life hectic.

Eugénie is still a student, so she has to go to class every day. Normally the lessons end at 17h30. Then she has to prepare for the hockey training. She comes home late in the evening and goes to bed by 23h30, trying to wake up at 06h30. As you can see, she doesn’t catch much sleep and this rhythm is tiring, which negatively influences her recovery.

Measurement results that confront you with the problem

Because of the stress and bad recovery, Eugénie wanted to start monitoring with Mindstretch. She was coached by Koen and by Dominique Monami, a formal professional tennis player. Both of them followed her monitoring results closely. Koen knew Mindstretch already for some time. There was a project before with hockey players in collaboration with the SportsTechLab.

This gave him the idea to use Mindstretch with Eugénie as well as the play-offs and semi-finals came closer. It helped him and Dominique to gain data of Eugénie’s mental load levels, so they could adapt their coaching to it. As Koen said: “In my view, as Mindstretch is not a sports app, the objectiveness of the results is the biggest advantage of Mindstretch. It proves black on white how someone is mentally doing and whether the coaching is helping or not.” When we asked Koen if he and Dominique expected the results that were measured, he said: “They were as we hoped but on the other hand, we were surprised as well as they confront you with the problem. What makes it nice to see, is when the coaching sessions have their predicted impact.”

Other small techniques to improve mental strength

The results of Eugénie were very clear. In the beginning, she was very stressed. As you can see in the first picture, her results were completely orange before, during and after the game. “I learnt a breathing exercise and some other small techniques. For example, I had to write two words on my hand: “next” and “simple,” Eugénie said. Koen explained that these last two words are a mind reset for Eugénie during the game and to keep focus. Eugénie had the tendency to keep thinking at something that didn’t go well during the game, but it’s important to keep going and concentrate on the following actions. Therefore, the word “next” was used to remind her of that. The other word “simple” was used when a difficult action fails, because then you have to start again with easier actions before you are going to take the risk again. As Koen explained: “It is only the future that matters. Staying in the past and grinding it in your head, doesn’t work.”

After implementing those techniques, Eugénie’s monitoring results improved. Now she recovers after the game and doesn’t stay in the orange zone, as you can see in the second picture. The amount of recovery in the Mindstretch app were for Koen and Dominique the key to look at. In the beginning there was no recovery at all. But you could see the influences of the exercises in the next games. More and more recovery appeared in Eugénie’s results.

It’s all about the story behind the data

Eugénie is glad that she has monitored with Mindstretch. As she said: “For me, it was very useful and important.” Koen as well is planning on using Mindstretch more in the future with Sportpraktijk. “It is a tool that gives you a lot of insights. Not only athletes but also managers benefit from the insights Mindstretch gives. We will definitely keep on using Mindstretch,” said Koen.

It is great for us to see the impact of Mindstretch on Eugénie’s performances in hockey. Many thanks to Eugénie, Koen and Dominique for sharing their story. To end this blog post we would like to use the wonderful quote of Koen: “It’s all about the story behind the data!”


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