I’m going to talk about reading the play using my favorite scene from Ford versus Ferrari to drive home some points. If you haven’t seen the movie go check it out. Here’s the clip:

The scene has so much wisdom in it for goalies. “… as the car speeds up everything else slows down…” When things get stressful, when the play moves fast, it is imperative that a goalie remain calm, aware and read the play. Slow the game down. Open up the vision and take everything in.

Notice the demeanor of the character, Ken Miles. He is calm as he explains the phenomena of staying aware under chaos to his son. He is almost Zen-like; in a state of total equanimity. Being calm but alert is a term I call relaxed intensity. It is hyper readiness combined with poise – the true secret to great goaltending.

But how do you get there? There are many ways. Sometimes it is something you read or watch that reveals a deep understanding. I find meditation helps as well. I recommend an app called Headspace if you are interested in exploring meditation.

Or it could be a course like the one some of my students and I took that exposed us to stressful situations and reinforced the importance of staying calm and focused in order to get through tough challenges. You can read about it and watch the mini documentary here.

There are many ways to become a better goalie. A lot of them have nothing to do with training on the ice: Seek knowledge. Open up the mind. Get away from the ice and play other sports. Read.

Having wisdom helps in the pursuit of excellence. Understanding oneself helps in the pursuit of excellence.

I will give you my take on perfection in my next post.

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