Special to JohnFMurray.com -Sep 30, 2007 – Could this 0-4 start finally be the wake-up call this team needs to commit to a serious mental training program?
Palm Beach, FL — September 31, 2007 — Our Miami Dolphins are by far the most popular sports show in this football-rich state, and Miami team legacy can still boast two Super Bowl championships in five appearances, the winningest football coach ever, the best pure passer known, and even moderate success during the Jimmy Johnson and Dave Wannstedt eras.
But now, for the first time ever, the tradition created by the likes of Csonka, Griese, Shula, and Marino, seems to be in peril. Success seems eons away in this current climate of embarrassment. The team dropped into new depths of mediocrity after the loss to Oakland yesterday 35-17. What made it all the more painful was that the quarterback the Dolphins released, Daunte Culpepper, had a great game, and ran for the final score on the same legs the Dolphins considered his reason for release.
Throughout most of the Dolphins years from 1970 on, there has been one person who has steadfastly supported this team from the varying perspectives of a 12-year old fan in the early 70s, to a season ticket holder, and an occasional sport psychology consultant. I would like nothing more than to see this team find their mark again and return to greatness, says Dr. John F. Murray, the sport psychologist dubbed the Freud of Football by the Washington Post.
In this day and age, I believe that any team that fails to adopt a significant mental training program from day one of camp is really missing a huge advantage, says Murray. Dr. Murray says he has been a sports and performance psychologist in private practice for ten years and lives in South Florida.
Most teams still do not stress mental performance. The mind is the last great frontier in sports, he says, and if there is one successful franchise that could set an example as a model of training for the rest of the NFL, it is the Miami Dolphins. Of course, the assumption is that success does matter and that coaches and administrators are willing to do anything they can to achieve it.
Another aspect of performance is dealing with defeat. The team and the coaches must be very down today. Their feelings probably hurt more than their bodies. When feelings erupt into mental anguish, what do you do? You work with a professional who knows how to help you deal with this pain and best turn the ship around.
You can get through this, Murray states, but you may need help. He, like the rest of South Florida wants what the team wants “ to win.
Dr. Murray is available for interviews.
John F. Murray, Ph.D.
Licensed Clinical and Sport Performance Psychologist
340 Royal Poinciana Way Suite 339J
Palm Beach, FL 33480
Dr. John F. Murray is a sports psychologist and clinical psychologist providing sports psychology and counseling services based in Palm Beach, Florida.