Olympic Rower/Sports Psychologist Amy Baltzell Talks to Blue Athletes

Jennifer Lamy '13
Sports Information Assistant


WELLESLEY, Mass. -- Wellesley College Athletics welcomed Dr. Amy Baltzell, sports psychologist, to campus for a three-part workshop for student-athletes. The programs were held Wednesdays February 1, February 8, and February 22.

Baltzell is coordinator of the Sport Psychology Specialization at Boston University. She also teaches in the Counseling Program of the Literacy & Language, Counseling, and Development Department at BU. She provides sports psychology education and consulting services to teams, coaches, and individuals and has authored many publications including her recent book, Living in the Sweet Spot: Preparing for Performance in Sport and Life.

In the first workshop installment at Wellesley, titled Creating Intention for Practice and Game Day, Baltzell introduced athletes to techniques for optimizing performance in practice and competition. She used interactive discussion and personal anecdotes to illustrate the importance of setting objectives, and then taught student-athletes how to identify, set, and evaluate their own intentions.

In the second week’s program, Dealing with Negative Emotions, Baltzell walked students through the causes and impacts of negative emotions on sports performance. She called on the students to reflect on instances of anxiety and other emotions in their own sports and suggested mechanisms for channeling and overcoming them.

The final portion of the workshop, titled Strategies for Best Focus on Game Day, was Wednesday February 22. Student-athletes participated in a series of exercises and discussions designed to encourage thought processes about performing best in competition. Baltzell covered methods for athletes to create intention for, focus on, and enjoy game day.

Baltzell’s workshops draw on personal experience, herself having competed with the US National Rowing team from 1989-1991, and on the Olympic Rowing Team in 1992. Additionally, she was member of the 1995 America’s Cup All-Women’s sailing team. Baltzell has coached rowing at the youth, collegiate, and masters levels. Earlier this year, she served on Wellesley’s Title IX Panel.