We started our day off today with a lecture on sports psychology by Amanda Palmer, who is actually one of the psychologists for some of the team here at the AIS. She talked to us about the importance of mental health in the rehabilitation process and how the psychological component is just as important as the physical component when it comes to recovering from an injury. Ms. Palmer also talked about the use of psychology as a "performance enhancement" because it can be an important part in helping athletes to reach their full potential. We ended our lecture with an exercise in mindfulness and I think a lot of us found it difficult to focus on only one thing because we are so used to thinking about 100s of things all at once.
After this lecture we broke into two groups and we each had a tour of the physiology labs. These labs were filled with equipment for testing an athlete's VO2 max, blood, body composition, as well as a variety of other things. Most of the equipment being used was actually built there specifically for the needs of the AIS. It was an incredible experience being able to tour this facility and see all the behind the scenes work that goes into training an elite athlete. The sports management students also had an opportunity to speak with David Meyer, an event coordinator for the AIS. He talked to the group about his career path and also his job here in facility management.
In the afternoon we headed over to the courts for our netball lesson, or what we thought would be our netball lesson anyways. Turns out netball is oddly similar to basketball... Nonetheless, we were still able to play basketball with two of the athletes who stay here at the AIS. It was fun getting to talk and play with them, even thuogh they were head and shoulders above us... literally.
Overall I think we are all enjoying our time here at the AIS. We have had a couple great lectures here and it is a relaxing change from the fast paced city. I think we are all excited to see what the rest of the trip has in store for us. Next you will be hearing from Dana!