Counseling is seeking solutions for the stressors and challenges in which you may experiencing. It is working towards improving your response to stress, improve performance, and improve one's understanding of themselves by talking through their challenges with a professional.

Athletic Counseling is the practice of working on real-world stressors, and increasing performance and understanding of their current challenges being faced in their sport and public pressures.
I would classify an athlete as anyone who uses physicality to overcome their challenges in their daily life structure. This includes both those individuals who play sports competitively at a high level, all the way down to weekend workout warriors.  

Why work with athletes? As a former collegiate athlete myself, I understand the toll that pressures to succeed can have on someone’s physical and mental performance. I understand the impact of injuries on motivation, and I enjoy helping other athletes overcome their mental barriers to improve their self satisfaction through appropriate goal setting, routine management, and other necessary interventions to improve performance overall.

Athletes are different, and one method that I use in treatment is movement related interventions to promote a pathway towards disclosure, along with an increased availability to access challenging thoughts. This focuses on the brain-body connection, and may routinely involve throwing a ball back and forth, focusing on fine motor interventions, and the impact of these movements on overall performance, along with understanding the impacts of sleep and stress on overall functioning within an individual’s community.

In treatment, we will work towards improving self-talk/mantra, identifying positive effects of movement and emotional output, improving patterned behaviors to promote performance, translating trained skills, be them physical or mental skills, in competition to improve performance, along with utilizing mental skills training in management of high expectations (pressure), how to gain confidence, how to trust their skills to compete more effectively, and how to improve re-orientation/re-focus in competition.
High Performers
High performing individuals, be it students, working professionals, or anyone in between, operate under an intense level of self-imposed pressure to succeed. In many situations, this pressure leads to intense challenges within relationships, difficulties with stress response, isolation, and even somatic responses. In treatment, we work towards reducing these symptoms through mindfulness work, positive self-talk, forming appropriate goals, and emphasizing the neural connectivity between our physical movement, and our emotional output.
First Responders
The term First Responder refers to individuals who are willing to step-up and respond in an emergency situation. This identification can extend to those in Law Enforcement, Fire/EMS, Paramedics, Nursing, Counseling/Social Work, Military members, and a variety of others in our local community.  

As a counselor, and someone who holds a designation as a Certified First Responder Counselor (CFRC), this has been a passion area of mine in the field as well. Some of the common experiences my first responder clients exhibit are related to stress/pressure to perform in high risk/pressure situations, difficulties with making split-second decisions in the time of distress, trauma/flashback behaviors due to negative actions they have been exposed to in their line of work, isolation from others, feeling alone/misunderstood, amongst a variety of other common challenges.

In treatment, we commonly focus on management of stress response, improving response/communication towards flashbacks and other negative aspects of stress, increasing a responder’s ability to communicate with those whom they consider important, increasing the individual’s understanding of different emotional stressors, and improving the responder’s trust in their training/tactics to make the most informed decision while in their field.
Injury Response Therapy
As an individual who was routinely injured while participating in competitive athletics, this has grown into a passion area of mine in treatment. I have seen first hand how impactful an injury can be on someone’s motivation, hopefulness, self-talk/affirmations, among other symptoms.

When stating injury response counseling, it is meant as both injury sustained through competitive/other forms of athletics, car accidents, developmental injuries, and even injuries due to acts of nature.

In treatment, we work towards improving self-talk/understanding of the sense of control/lack thereof, along with the importance of setting appropriate goals/expectations in the recovery process. We also look towards increasing our understanding of the injury and the impacts of the injury to improve motivation for recovery and reintegration into our community.
Mental Training Skills
Mental skills training consists of using therapeutic interventions to improve an individual’s ability to trust themselves in their actions, improve understanding of actions/patterns, promote change in an individual’s ability to self-regulate/reorient to task completion, and reduce stress response overall in their community.

The interventions used are from a more holistic approach to treatment, meaning that these may not always look like traditional talk therapy approaches to treatment. These skills involve improving awareness of stressors, improving routines, increasing meaningful life skills, and improve patterns to increase satisfaction overall.
Perfectionism is a common reaction towards an individual’s fear of being judged or ridiculed by others, or themselves, influencing an individual’s actions due to the worry of not meeting these high expectations. There can be many factors influencing perfectionistic tendencies, including a response to high parental expectations in childhood, pressure towards performing in academia/athletics, responding to trauma, along with the self-imposed thought of “not being good enough.”

This may show up as the student who is missing assignments with thoughts about not getting a high grade, disabling the student from turning in the assignment due to this not meeting their expectations. This may also look like an athlete's difficulties with implementing a new skill in competition due to fear of being ridiculed by their coaches, peers, etc. for not meeting their expectations/outcomes in their competition.  

A situation in my personal experience with this was in art classes while in school where I would struggle with the idea of the final image not meeting my lofty expectations. In sports, this would also routinely hinder my willingness to use the newest spin/swim move that I had practiced for hours in my backyard, however, I was worried about the outcome in a game not meeting my expectations to perform.

Common interventions for perfectionism include identifying the route of the thoughts, setting appropriate boundaries and realistic expectations for performance, being mindful of what is within our control, increasing sensory input in our management of the moment, and identifying positive traits to reinforce an individual’s self-esteem.
Athletic/Sports Counseling/Sports Psychology
Sports counseling/Sports psychology separates itself from more traditional forms of therapy in that it utilizes more movement and physiological aspects of performance. Although there is many areas of overlap between sports psychology and other forms of treatment, the focus moves into more performance based strategies, along with finding preferred strategies to increase routine setting, working on mental performance skills, focusing on outside forces and pressures, which typically creat a barrier towards improved performance.
EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing
Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing therapy (EMDR) is an evidence-based somatic therapy that helps you reprocess painful memories and experiences. EMDR regulates the nervous system and reshapes brain patterns so that what was previously triggering can be confronted without emotional spiraling. EMDR is helpful for trauma, anxiety, depression, and more. It can help balance your mood and make you feel much more at peace, as well as improve communication, boundaries, and relationships.

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Phone: (513)299-4794


Online in Ohio, Vermont, or South Carolina.

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