Elite athletes play out their lives in the most public of arenas. Everything they do is analysed in real time and then picked apart in the pub afterwards. „Why did they miss that penalty?” „What made him fall at the first jump?” „That press conference was a bit weird.” We can all speculate, but what’s really going on?
In Head in the Game we peer into this highly confidential, psychological world. We follow the journeys of ten athletes in their therapy sessions with Gary, from a rugby player arrested for a drunken brawl, through a homesick cricketer on tour, to a snooker player struggling with his feelings of inadequacy and low self-esteem. Structured around the emotions we all experience on a daily basis – shame, anger, fear, jealousy, love – chapter-by-chapter the inner traumas that impact their performance are revealed, explained and resolved.
Gary Bloom is a sports psychotherapist. He works with footballers, cricketers, rugby players, jockeys, Olympians and many other athletes besides. They might seem like superheroes on the pitch, but in the dressing room they’re just like anybody else, subject to the same emotional pressures that affect all of us.
You might not be on fifty grand a week or hold a world record, but seeing how sportspeople overcome their demons is a powerful way of tackling your own, because as Gary says, happier players play better – in sport and in life.