Episode 37: Coach Reed Maltbie on the Power of Words

We have the opportunity to actually shape lives, behaviors, beliefs, based on just what we’re saying to our athletes.
— Reed Maltbie

Words are powerful. They have the ability to inspire, motivate, and lift kids, but also the power to do the opposite. The considerable work of our expert in this episode has helped coaches and parents become more aware of their words, teaching how they can build confidence and self-esteem in athletes and avoid the pitfalls of imprinting. Coach Reed has dedicated his life to youth sports as the developer of the Excellence Equation Education System, co-creator of Positive Discipline Tools for Coaches, and the lead speaker and Chief Content Officer for Changing the Game. With 30 years of experience as an educator and coach, and dual master’s degrees in Sports Psychology and Early Childhood Education he offers a wealth of practical and science-based experience to aid coaches and others in leading athletes to excel in and beyond sports. Since the release of his TEDx talk “Echoes Beyond the Game”, he’s become a trusted educator and advisor to sports organizations worldwide. Coach Reed’s gifts are in creating passion and purpose in others, and in distilling complex theories into understandable and easily implementable practices. His interest in brain health and language led him to research how important the echos left on the field have on the psyche of athletes. He shares that for every negative word it takes nearly five positives to reduce the imprint, the immense importance of allowing athletes to guide post-game conversations, and creating the vital role of team parent to act as a liaison between parents and coaches. To connect with Coach Reed, learn more about the 3 myths of youth sports, watch his TEDx talk, listen to the Way of Champions podcast, and learn ways to create a more athlete-centric playing environment, find him here:https://changingthegameproject.com!


Episode 36: Betsy Oypt on Motherhood and Nutrition for Athletes

As an athlete, and just as a human, you need to take care of your body.
— Betsy Opyt

Betsy Opyt is a registered and licensed dietitian with a background in clinical nutrition therapy. She is a certified diabetes educator who has paved her way as a mom, fitness trainer, former gymnast, and the president, CEO, and founder of Betsy’s Best Gourmet Nut and Seed Butters. She is an active daily ambassador for the brand, and its driving force. In 2015 Betsy was named the Florida Young Mother of the Year by the American Mother’s Incorporated Florida chapter, and acts as an ambassador, traveling the state and raising awareness around women’s issues. Betsy was also crowned Miss Indiana in 2000 and spent her reign traveling her home state to inspire and engage children to develop healthier lifestyle habits. She shares with us how a lifetime of observing how nutrition aided her performance and fueled in her a passion for the health of athletes. Betsy has always been an incredible advocate for the connection between fuel and performance. She has excellent recipes and recommendations on her website, along with her delicious line of nut butter - you can find them athttps://betsysbest.com!  She recommends complex carbohydrates like oatmeal and fruit smoothies in the morning, snacks at the ready right after practices and games, hydration always, and most of all making eating fun! Betsy emphasizes that working on these skills is all about planning, and encourages parents to involve their athletes in prepping for healthy eating, inviting them to come along to the grocery store, cook together, and think about nutrition as a family. We hope that you share this week’s episode with your athletes, and start to make fueling up right a whole-family effort!


Episode 35: Dr. Brandonn Harris on Early Specialization and Burnout

Dr. Brandonn Harris is the Program Director and an associate professor of Sport and Exercise Psychology at Georgia Southern University, where he is also the graduate Program Director for the department of Health Sciences and Kinesthesiology. Dr. Harris teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in the areas of ethical issues in Sports Psychology, psychological aspects of peak performance, Sport and Exercise Psychology interventions, and Social Psychology of sport. At Georgia Southern he also supervises graduate students in their practica in Sport and Exercise Psychology. He is a current member of the Association for Applied Sports Psychology and a member of the American Psychological Association Division 47. He is a Certified Mental Performance Consultant (CMPC), and listed on the United States Olympic Committee Sport Psychology Registry. As a Sport and Exercise Psychology practitioner he has consulted with youth and collegiate athletes, teams, parents, and coaches on a variety of vital topics in the field. He holds a BA in Exercise Science, with a Sport Psychology specialization, from Truman State University. In addition he completed two master’s degrees in Sport and Exercise Psychology and Community Counseling, both from West Virginia University, and a PhD in Sport and Exercise Psychology from West Virginia U. His work with how Sport Psychology consulting can support athletes and educate both parents and coaches is groundbreaking. This episode he joins Kathy to discuss the pivotal role parents have in guiding their athletes around the current state of youth sport, and specifically the challenges of early specialization and burnout. This episode is one we urge you not to miss! Dr. Harris shares his incredible expertise on specific ways parents can support their athletes, backed by some amazing research!

Episode 34: Lindsey Hamilton on Being a Good Teammate.

There’s such an opportunity for us to really teach our kids in a more implicit way and demonstrate what good teammates look like.
— Lindsey Hamilton

Friend of the podcast Lindsey Hamilton joins us today to share her wisdom! As a mental performance coach, Lindsey dedicates herself to empowering others to build the best version of themselves. In her role as a mental conditioning coach at IMG academy in Bradenton, Florida Lindsey works with elite youth athletes to develop the mindset they need to perform at their best. She specializes in women’s sports to help female athletes build confidence, maintain composure, and develop a rich connection in ways that transcend sport. Lindsey relentlessly encourages those around her to pursue their dreams and have a fun time doing it. Lindsey completed her master’s degree in Exercise and Sports Science with an emphasis in Sports Psychology from the University of Utah after completing dual BA degrees in Psychology and Sociology from Chapman University. She has dedicated a great deal of professional expertise to working with parents, highlighting in this episode the importance of being a good teammate to the athlete, building the value of humility in and out of the arena, role modeling, and how the athlete’s performance is not a reflection on the parent’s technique.

Episode 33: Dr. Rob Bell on Setting a Precedence

It’s tough to be driven when you’re always being driven.
— Dr. Rob Bell

Dr. Bell is a mental toughness coach who has worked with champions on the PGA tour, Olympic medalists, Notre Dame athletes, and Indy Eleven players. He has written six books on performance and joins Kathy this week to discuss his book Don’t “Should” on Your Kids: Build Their Mental Toughness, sharing some amazing wisdom for both parents and athletes on how to support your athlete and focus on being on the journey together. Dr. Bell also hosts the podcast Fifteen Minutes of Mental Toughness - if you loved this episode please like and listen to his show as well! Dr. Rob Bell has been a keynote speaker for sports organizations and corporations across the country, and we can see why! He was an incredible guest, sharing game plans on how to handle stress, control emotion, and create routines as a family. Dr. Bell emphasized that building confidence comes from setting a precedence - making sure that athletes feel supported even when they make mistakes. He shares that mental toughness skills come from athletes teaching themselves, supported by sport parents. We encourage all our listeners to huddle the whole family for this week’s episode (Try on the car ride home!).  

Connect with Dr. Bell on his website: https://drrobbell.com

Episode 32: Dr. Leonard Zaichkowsky on Raising Cognitively Encouraged Playmakers

Don’t ignore the development of their thinking skills and the ability to attend.
— Dr. Leonard Zaichkowsky

Professor at Boston University, researcher, and consultant Len Zaichkowsky joins Kathy this week to talk about the importance of perception, decision making, and engaging your athlete’s cognition; helping them to hone the skills of a playmaker. Dr. Zaichkowsky has been a professional in the field of Sports Psychology for almost four decades. He acted as a pioneer, bringing together the research fields of Cognitive Neuroscience and Sports Performance as an interdisciplinary science. His academic textbooks and research publications demonstrated the importance of the athlete’s brain in anticipating and acting on opportunities during competition. He has consulted with teams in the NBA, NHL, NFL, MLB, Australian rules football, Spanish men’s national soccer team, and Olympic sport organizations across the  globe. His book, released this year, “The Playmaker's Advantage: How to Raise Your Mental Game to the Next Level” focuses on the elements of quick seeing, thinking, and action-taking by the athletes who lead in their respective sports. Dr. Zaichkowsky is a former president and fellow of the Association for Applied Sports Psychology, and currently the section editor of psychology for the International Journal of Sport and Health Science. Recently the American Psychological Association honored Dr. Zaichkowsky with the Distinguished Service to the Profession Award. Today, Len is co-founder and senior consultant at 80% Mental Consulting, advising on developing athlete cognition. You can connect with both Dr. Leonard Zaichkowsky and his co-author Daniel Peterson by visiting http://www.80percentmental.com/contact. We hope that you will share this episode and connect with the authors, as Dr. Zaichkowsky’s expertise is matched only by his kindness - and don't forget to try the app (available here: https://www.gamesensesports.com) to practice your skills at bat!

Episode 31: Carrie Cheadle on Regaining Confidence and Building Resilience Through Injury Recovery

This is a part of a bigger journey, and you can really use it to become a better athlete.
— Carrie Cheadle

Author and expert in sports performance Carrie Cheadle is our guest this week! We want to encourage both parents and athletes (especially those navigating injuries) to listen in together to this episode. Carrie is an incredible guide who employs a real-life approach to her work, and we think you’re going to really appreciate her expertise. A resident of Petaluma, California, just north of San Francisco, Carrie has been working on the performance of teams, organizations, and individual athletes and exercisers since 2002. She is the author of the book “On Top of Your Game: Mental Skills to Maximize Your Athletic Performance” and co-author of the upcoming book “Rebound”, which will be released in 2019 and focuses on helping injured athletes regain confidence and build resilience through injury recovery and return to sport. She has been interviewed as an expert resource for articles in publications such as Outside, Shape, Men’s Fitness, Women’s Health, Runner’s World, Bicycle, and The Huffington Post. She is an incredible speaker who has spoken for and consulted with many collegiate teams, cycling teams, and triathlon teams, as well as corporate organizations like Camelbak! Carrie is an expert in mental skills training, working with athletes at all ages and levels from recreational athletes to elite and professional athletes competing on national and international levels. She specializes in working with athletes and exercisers with Type 1 Diabetes and is the Director of the mental skills training program for Diabetes Training Camp. She received her BA in Psychology from Sonoma State University, and MA in Sports Psychology from John F. Kennedy University. Carrie has also taught at the collegiate level, currently serving as an adjunct professor at John F. Kennedy University. Carrie has a life-long commitment to her athletic performance and shares what has been most beneficial in shifting her mindset through injuries.

Episode 30: Episode 30: Dr. Jose Colon on the Relationship Between Sleep Health and Peak Performance

Just like a washing machine has different cycles, our sleep has different cycles, our brain, and our body, and we cycle between these stages of REM sleep and non-REM sleep and different cycles have different functions.
— Dr. Jose Colon

Welcome to Parenting Peak Performers season three! Now that we’ve heard from sports parents and the athletes themselves, Kathy kicks off the new season by diving into the expert perspective! First up is Dr. Jose Colon, sleep expert and dual board-certified physician in sleep medicine and neurology, with special qualifications in child neurology. He is a member of The Institute for Functional Medicine, The American College of Lifestyle Medicine, the American Society of Clinical Hypnosis, and a founding member of the Society of Behavioral Sleep Medicine. Dr. Colon is also an award-winning author of several books on sleep, children’s mindfulness for sleep, and infant sleep. He shares incredible information on sleep deprivation, injury, EMF, and why it is that much more important for athletes to exercise - that is exercise healthy sleep habits (hint: you’ll want an alarm clock)! We look forward to sharing more perspectives from coaches, clinicians, and other experts in the field this season, get ready!

Dr. Colon is dual board-certified in sleep medicine and neurology, with special qualifications in child neurology. He is a member of the Institute for Functional Medicine (IFM) and American College of Lifestyle Medicine (ACLM). He is also a founding member of the Society of Behavioral Sleep Medicine (SBSM) and is a member of the American Society of Clinical Hypnosis (ASCH). Dr. Colon is an award-winning author of for books for sleep, children’s mindfulness and sleep, and infant sleep.  

Episode 29: Joey Lye on the Importance Student - Led Coaching

This week’s guest is an excellent example of peak performance, as an athlete, and as a collegiate coach!

Joey is the head softball coach at Bucknell University, and has been a member of the Canadian national softball team since 2010. During her collegiate career she was a 4-year letter winner at Williams College in both ice hockey and softball. Joey was named to the NESCAC All-Sportsmanship team for both softball and hockey, and was a four-time All-Conference New England Region First Team selection shortstop. Lye set five all-time school records for Williams in batting, with some very impressive stats! During her senior season she led the nation with a 563 batting average, setting a single-season record at Williams. She also set a record for 22 stolen bases in the very same season! In 2009 Joey was the NESCAC and ECAC Division Three New England Player of the Year, and joined the Canadian National Softball Team the following season. She has been very successful on the team, batting a 611 average at the 2012 Women’s World Championship and aiding Canada in their silver medal win at the 2011 Pan American Games. Kathy and Joey discuss responsibility, coaching, playing, and the importance of allowing athletes to lead.

Episode 28: Swimmer and Mom Cailin Weidenmiller on Leaning into Independence and Off of the Pressure

There was never a pressure for me to be successful as long as I put all of my effort in, there was never this reward for being so great, it was all about how you showed up and how you committed and how hard you worked.
— Cailin Weidenmiller

Cailin is a former collegiate swimmer and mother of three. She began swimming at five while participating in multiple team sports and found a love for both the water and the routine. In middle school her focus shifted to swimming solely, resulting in three-practice days as a high school student and the desire to swim on the collegiate level. When she began swimming for The College of the Holy Cross she was named Rookie of the year for her Freshman season but began to notice that her desire for routine was creating anxiety and Tendinitis in both of her shoulders. By her Sophomore season, her heart and mind were not in the sport, causing her to walk away. Cailin and Kathy discuss her journey of discovering a love of sports, how living up to expectations affected her drive and finding herself as an athlete. Cailin shares how as a mom she is navigating allowing her own children to love what they’re doing and easing off pressure to perform both for her children and as a parent, all while she is currently training for an Ironman triathlon!

Episode 27: Expert in Sport and Performance Psychology Dr. Julie Wiernik on Tackling Perfectionism

There is no such thing as perfect, we are created to make errors, so I think once we accept that reality it’s so freeing.
— Dr. Julie Wiernik

Licensed Clinical Sport and Performance Psychologist Dr. Julie Wiernik comes on this week to discuss the mental game of being a top performer and her own journey with perfectionism. Julie competed on two high school state championship teams for volleyball and basketball and was a four-year varsity softball starter before earning a scholarship to the University of North Florida. She was a 4-year starter for the Women’s Osprey Softball team and excelled off the field. Julie was a Rhodes Scholar, earned All-conference and All-region honors, and was an Academic All-American; graduating Magna Cum Laude. In 1996 her UNF Flag Football team played in the Nike Flag Football Championships, and she earned All-America honors for being the best female quarterback in the country. Julie holds a Doctorate in Clinical Psychology and owns The Texas Center for Sports Psychology, where she works with incredible athletes to optimize their performance. She comes on to share her thoughts on how her internal motivation impacted her athletic career, and how parents can help athletes learn, rather than perfect. She shares healthy tools for building the parent-child relationship, autonomy, confidence, and self-awareness, and encourages parents to let their athletes take risks, but match goals of the student with the expectations of the parent. 

Episode 26: Sofia Perez on Making Sacrifices to Reach Your Goals

I’m going to be able to build a family and give that to my children, be a role model as they were to me.
— Sofia Perez

Sofia is a spectacular tennis player, and a rising Junior at Division I Florida Gulf Coast University.  She began playing tennis at the age of 10 with her father, who became her full-time coach the following year. Ten years later,  Kathy and Sofia discuss the value and importance of her parents as role models, how communication between parents and young athletes is a key factor,  and all the lessons she’s learned both on and off the court in the last decade of play. Parents! This episode is one the team at Parenting Peak Performers  would highly recommend listening to as a family - Sofia highlights ideas she wish she’d heard competing as a youth athlete, especially her parents’ belief in her as an athlete, their support in building her confidence through rigorous challenges, and how they made decisions as a United front that helped her consider and succeed in her goals. Sofia is looking forward to the upcoming FGCU season, and we look forward to watching her future in tennis!


Episode 25: Myles Pringle on Finding Home with Success

I can’t win everything. I don’t want to win everything, I don’t want to be first for everything... With me and defeat, I’m okay with defeat, because I know there’s something else that’s going to be better coming along in the future
— Myles Pringle

Myles began running through a lifetime love of soccer and team sports that transformed into a career in Track and Field in middle and high school. Myles was featured in Sports Illustrated’s Faces in the Crowd column for his accomplishments, which are numerous. He is the National Champion in both the indoor and outdoor 400m dash, holds All American honors in several events, and has achieved school records in the outdoor high jump at 2.14 meters, indoor high jump at 2.17 meters, indoor 400m at 46.11 seconds, and outdoor 200m at 21.28 seconds. He was awarded the USTFCCCA Men’s Midwest Region Indoor Track Athlete of the Year in 2017, and is a rising senior at Ashland University. Myles and Kathy discuss the importance of support from all sides, keeping healthy expectations and perspective on success, and seeking opportunity to improve over perfection. Myles is a true champion of growth mindset thanks to his relationship with his mom, who helped him cultivate focus within whatever arena he found himself competing in. Myles is looking forward to his final year of collegiate competition, the 2019 World Championships,  and the opportunity to run for Team USA in the 2020 Olympic Games.

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Episode 24: Twin sisters Monique Lamoureux-Morando and Jocelyne Lamoureux-Davidson on Gold Medal Balance

Were you a good teammate today? Did you pick somebody up? Did you create momentum by a big play you made and not just scoring a goal?... We’re pretty grateful for the balance that our parents had, and just making sure that at the end of the day people don’t remember the goals you that scored, they remember what type of teammate you were.
— Jocelyne Lamoureux-Davidson

From witnessing the first Olympic Women’s Hockey game from their living room in 1998, Jocelyne and Monique carried a desire to participate in the Olympic Games in Hockey. The twin sisters are from a family of six, raised by two incredible parent-athletes. As a part of the 2018 Olympic gold-winning US Women’s Hockey Team, these sisters are truly examples of peak performers. Monique and Jocelyne have both competed in three Olympic Games and were responsible for the assist and shoot-out that lead to the winning goal in the 2018 gold medal clincher. They talk with Kathy about balancing the process and the outcome, teamwork, and evaluating performance away from seeking the spotlight.

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Episode 23: Drew Beyer on Focusing on Process

You can’t risk the burnout even if they do become really good at age sixteen, seventeen, eighteen.
— Drew Beyer

Drew played a variety of sports while growing up in Florida, and began focusing on baseball from the eighth grade on. He played on the varsity baseball team at Sarasota High School, and then went on to play for four years at Florida Tech. As a freshman he was a part of the NCAA 2015 regional runner-up team, and in 2016 he was selected for the All Sunshine State Conference and All South Region teams. He played with the Alaska Baseball League in 2016, joining the Anchorage Bucks for summer ball, and in 2017 he was named the Florida Tech Male Athlete of the Year in baseball. He was both a member of the SSC Commissioners and the FIT Athletic Director’s Honor Roll all four years of his collegiate career, and as a senior became the all-time leader in career saves. Drew was recently signed with the Detroit Tigers, and is currently playing in the Gulf Coast League in Lakeland, Florida. Kathy and Drew go in-depth on persistence, confidence, and finding ways to support your athlete in playing for the process, not just for success.



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Episode 22: Gracie Kaplan Stein on the Value of Extended Family

They saw the strengths of each of us, and rolled with it.
— Gracie Kaplan-Stein

Gracie had a very successful collegiate career rowing on the women’s varsity team at UPenn, achieving incredible heights in competitive play during her tenure as a Quaker. Her boat rowed to a  silver medal in 2005 at the Eastern Rowing Championships (her Freshman season), and she went on to earn the title of Most Valuable Rower in 2007, was chosen for the Mid Atlantic First Team in both 2007 and 2008, and in 2008, her senior season, her team ranked 19th overall in the country. Gracie excelled in student leadership as Student Athlete Advisory Committee member, had a successful career as a scholar and athlete, and has taken the discipline she learned on to a happy career in marketing. She now lives in Florida, close to her incredible family. Gracie and Kathy talk leadership, prioritizing the drive of goals, and the importance of reading your child; taking the time to set healthy expectations and encouraging students to concentrate on themselves rather than participating in the rabbit-hole of comparison.


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Episode 21: Daniel Ugas on Family Tradition in Sports

You could sort of see the team was starting to become something else, and I wanted to be on that path to take the team to another level…in rowing, it’s not just one person that can win the race for themselves.
— Daniel Ugas

Daniel, a collegiate rower was the captain of his 2013-14 high school crew team in Miami.  Additionally he was a two-time national silver medalist, a state champion, regional champion, and was a part of the first crew team in school history to attend the Head of the Charles Regatta.  Currently is a junior at FIT.

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Episode 20: Emma Smyser on Ending A Career Early

He was the reason why it was so hard, and not because I knew he’d be mad, but just because I knew it would be heartbreaking in a sense, for him.
— Emma Smyser

Emma began playing golf competitively before beginning kindergarten, learning the game through play at three and four years old with her father on the course adjacent to their home in Indiana. She competed in middle and high school tournaments throughout Indiana and the country, placing second in the Indiana State Championship before going on to compete collegiately with the University of Florida for one year, transferring to Florida Gulf Coast University, and ultimately deciding to end her career to pursue rigorous studies in nursing. Emma and Kathy discuss the importance of quality time spent with her parents as an athlete, the enjoyment of the sport as a paramount to continuing in her athletic career, and ultimately  choosing to pursue a course of study, and a passion, away from athletics. Emma is now an EMT and is thrilled to be focused on pursuing her degree.

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Episode 19: Patrick O'Sullivan on Breaking Away and Parents Staying in Their Lane.

I always just say I loved hockey more than I hated what was happening to me, and I felt like in the end, like that would somehow mean more… I made it make sense mentally, because I had to do something.
— Patrick O’Sullivan

Patrick is a former NHL player, bestselling author, hockey analyst, Sirius Radio talk show host, husband, father, and fellow podcast host of “The Morning Bagger”. Kathy and Patrick discuss the lengthy process of healing from abusive relationships in sports, especially in the parent-athlete relationship, and the simplicity of supporting your athlete while realizing their passion ultimately directs performance more than any one thing a parent can contribute. Patrick is able to share his story of abuse after years of healing through partnership with medical professionals. His story is a powerful example of the impact of trauma and the damage it inflicts. He also highlights how many parents and coaches chose not to reach out in his situation, and urges all listeners to be aware of the signs of abuse, and seek help immediately from the police when you think abuse may be occurring.


“A simple phone call can be something that changes a child’s life…


Anything that’s not normal. There’s certain things if you’re around, if your child plays sports or even if it’s anything kind of team-based, where you’re around a group of kids all the time, you know some of the idiosyncrasies that these kids have, and if anything looks abnormal, and you’re seeing this now for a couple weeks, there might be something there. And the best case scenario is that you say something, and you’re wrong.”


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Episode 18: Morgan Reichert on Finding Purpose Post Sports

Every week it seemed like I was given another thing that I could hold onto… it was a big deal, and they made it a big deal with me.  
— Morgan Reichert

Morgan ran her first road race at age five, supported by her relationship with her father, and his constant support. Through his encouragement to compete, she began competing in 7th grade, going onto a successful middle and high school career, becoming a top state competitor in Ohio as a high school student. At Ohio University, after earning a scholarship to compete, she earned all-conference honors in cross country, as well as twice in track, before having to red-shirt from multiple stress fractures. After two full seasons of recovery, she was able to use her red shirt year to compete at FGCU while completing her masters degree. Morgan now helps others pursue their own goals as a Wellness Coordinator for the city of Naples. She and Kathy discuss the importance of relationships, finding identity as an athlete, and as an individual on and off the field.

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