Oct 05, 2020

Daniel Stewart's Tip of the Month: Athletic Anthems

USEA/Jessica Duffy Photo.

When you’re struggling to find your way out of a bad mood (insert frustration, disappointment, doubt, etc. here), it would be great if you could find a quick and easy trick – and an athletic anthem might just be one of those tricks!

You already know that music can calm you down, pump you up, and put you in a good mood, but did you realize that there’s a special sort of song that’s also been proven to improve your optimism and self-belief? That kind of song is called an athletic anthem, and it works because its lyrics contain hidden positive-affirmation sentences - messages that remind you to never quit, stay positive, and always believe in yourself. "The Climb" by Miley Cyrus is a good example. Here are the lyrics:

"There’s always going to be another mountain. I’m always going to want to make it move. Always going to be an uphill battle - sometimes I'm going to have to lose . . . I've got to be strong, just keep pushing on . . . "

When a song delivers an empowering message like this, it becomes more than music – it becomes an anthem. Its power comes from the idea that catchy music often has a weird way of getting stuck in your head, and that’s exactly what you’re hoping for! After all, what could be better than getting good thoughts stuck in your head at a time when you’re feeling bad?

The first step to finding an athletic anthem is to take a look at your playlists to see if any of your favorite songs are athletic anthems. You can do this by performing an online search to see if any of your songs have positive messages hidden in the lyrics. Once you find a few anthems, you can create a riding playlist using those songs. Perhaps you listen to a few calming, yet empowering songs the night before an important ride and a few upbeat songs the morning of those rides. Here are ten good examples of athletic anthems:

  • "Have It All" by Jason Mraz
  • "Love Myself" by Hailee Steinfeld
  • "Shake It Off" by Taylor Swift
  • "Pompeii" by Bastille
  • "Confident" by Demi Lovato
  • "Fight Song" by Rachel Platten
  • "Brave" by Sara Bareilles
  • "Ain’t Nothing Going To Break My Stride" by Mathew Wilder
  • "Cowgirls Don’t Cry" by Brooks and Dunn
  • "Try" by Pink

There’s just one rule when it comes to athletic anthems: they’re only to be used before mounting! Our sport requires you to be hyper-aware while mounted so be sure to leave your earbuds at home - that's exactly why you want to listen to your anthems before you ride and why you want those positive and empowering lyrics to get stuck in your head before you mount up!

I hope you enjoyed this month’s tip and that I’ll get the chance to teach you in one of my upcoming fall clinics around the county (grab your mask and come join me!) For more information on my clinics, or hosting one, please visit www.pressureproofacademy.com.

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