Here are some people who inspire us:
Jim Thompson: "Positive Coaching – Building Character and Self-Esteem Through Sports" – an inspiring book for coaches, trainers and parents on how to work with young athletes. Thompson is a professor at the prestigious Stanford University in the US. Based on his experience in business and academic life, he created "The Positive Coaching Alliance", an organization that spreads his ideas on positive coaching.
The Dutch psychologist and consultant Erwin van Baarle wrote an interesting book about coaching young football players. He also uses positive coaching and shows how results are the natural outcome when focusing on the pleasure of playing. His book is called: "Presteren met plezier – Voetbalcoaching van pupillen" (Performing with pleasure – Football coaching of young football players). "Performing with pleasure – Football coaching of young football players"
Marcus Buckingham: "Go Put Your Strengths to Work" – a practical handbook to map your own strengths and to tap into this potential.
Jim Collins' "Good to Great – Why some companies make the leap and others don't." Collins investigated how successful companies (in terms of long term growth and increased value of share price) differ from other companies and found some interesting common characteristics.
Margriet Sitskoorn heads up the Cognitive Neuroscience Unit at the University Medical Centre in Utrecht (Holland). In her book "Het Maakbare Brein" she demonstrates how you can actively mould and change your brain, in order to improve performance. A typical illustration of her theory is used in imagery or visualization.
Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi invented the concept of "flow". In his book "Flow in Sports – The keys to optimal experiences and performances” he explains how you can create your optimal level of tension as an athlete.
Peter Murphy & Jan Huijbers bring Jung back to life with Action Type (Book: Totaalcoachen). A manual for the sport psychologist to discover strengths and pitfalls of athletes and coaches and a pragmatic approach on how to use these in mental coaching. www.actiontype.nl
And a few good links if you’re interested to learn more about mental coaching and sport psychology:
Vlaamse Vereniging voor Sportpsychologie
Vereniging voor Sportpsychologie in Nederland
European Federation of Sport Psychology
International Society of Sport Psychology