From Mixed Martial Arts publications to Women’s Fitness magazine.
What makes Mystic Mac? McGregor, Rousey and the power of the mind
Ralph Welch from Severe MMA interviewed me about the psychological strength of elite mixed martial arts fighter, Conor McGregor.
“The comparison between McGregor and Rousey is a really interesting one. You have two of the elite, yet two very different mindsets. For Rousey a loss is utterly cataclysmic. But McGregor has no fear of failure whatsoever. He embraces it. That’s what makes him so special.”
Hazel Gale, decorated international amateur boxer/kickboxer turned sports psychologist, relaxes into her chair. She works out of her intentionally sparse office in east London, an area of this old city that used to be home to spit and sawdust gyms that spawned the likes of Terry Spinks, Charlie Magri and many other storied pugilists…
Chael Sonnen has spoken about the ways in which hypnotherapy improved his performance. Now the MMA scene is getting increasingly interested in the approach.
FightLand interviewed me in July 2014 about cognitive hypnotherapy and how it can be used to help fighters.
“The life and times of Chael P. Sonnen will likely fill more than one book in due course. The contents of one chapter remain under wraps as he gears up for a return to action at Metamoris 4 next month, though. In his own words (as told to The Joe Rogan Podcast):
“”I hate talking about this because this was a real secret. This was a real turning point for me was when I went in, worked on sports psychology and got hypnotized. I was never the same. I was never the same in practice, my attitude was different. Controlling my diet, being disciplined, falling asleep, the way I approached battle, the way I approached the second round. Everything changed, and it changed to the point where, I hate to say what I just said and now it’s too late because I felt like it was my secret. I discovered something and I don’t want other people to know. I will write about it someday in a book, I will talk about it you know, when I’m retired, but I’m not going to tell anybody because it’s competitive edge.”
In March, 2013 Lucy Fry consulted with me before writing the following article on sports hypnosis and how to utilise some simple visualisation to increase your athletic performance.
“Hypnotherapy could help you run faster, lose weight or revamp your diet. Lucy Fry looks into this mind training technique to find out how…
“When you envisage hypnosis, you probably think of lying a couch, feet up and “going under”. You might also view it as a way that helps smokers quit cigarettes, or as a therapeutic tool for dealing with an irrational fear. But, have you considered using hypnosis, and associated techniques such as mental rehearsal and ‘anchoring’, to help you reduce your 10k time, or drop that stubborn last half stone?”
A little while ago I was lucky enough to be interviewed by best selling author and fellow kickboxer David Bodanis. We talked about the illness that eventually led me to hypnotherapy (chronic fatigue or ME), the interventions I used to overcome it and the incredible impact that it all eventually had on my fighting and career. It just goes to show that not everything that feels bad at the time needs to end that way…
“Take me back to your first international bout:
“– Let me see… that must have been the WAKO European Championships, in Portugal, 2008. I was really nervous since I’d been training less than three years and looking back I was vastly inexperienced. But I was grateful to have won the nationals and the fight offs that year to gain my place on the squad anyway.””
You Magazine interviewed me about my experience of, and recovery from chronic fatigue.
“It’s a familiar slippery slope into exhaustion, starting with a big professional project, forcing you to work late night after night, relying on caffeine and sugar to get you through. Add to the mix the many social engagements at this time of year, and early-morning gym sessions to counterbalance all that unhealthiness. But you’re still coping, for now at least…”
An article about my sports hypnotherapy practice from December 2013.
“If you’re setting yourself a physical resolu- tion this year – whether it’s to get ripped like Pink or punch like Nicola Adams – the rst priority should be re-shaping, not your triceps, but your mind.”
“It’s a troubling paradox but sometimes we sabotage our most important goals. Ever wondered why, despite how great you feel post-workout, you o en sack o the gym at the last moment, only to go home feeling rubbish anyway? Or perhaps you enter 10k races all the time, but never manage to train enough–oreventurnup–soendupbackat square one, with a sense of failure to boot?”
Champion boxer and kickboxer Hazel Gale is fighting back with the power of positivity.
“The leathery thwack of glove on pad echoes around the basement that is Paragon Gym in Shoreditch. Founded by two brothers, British and world champion kickboxers John and Stuart Lawson, in 1996, this homely boxing and kickboxing gym has bred many a champion fighter. And Hazel Gale, a 31-year-old with an elegant yet ferocious style, is one of them.
Since first competing in 2007, she’s claimed such kickboxing titles as the 2007 WAKO British Full Contact Champion, the 2009 ISKA Full Contact European Champion and the 2010 ISKA Full Contact and Light Contact World Champion. And as an unbeaten boxer in the Amateur Boxing Association (ABA), she’s won the 2011 ABA English Championships and 2011 Haringey Box Cup. Not bad for someone who joined Paragon as a total beginner in 2005, with “every bad habit under the sun”…”
Women’s Fitness used me for their article on hypnotherapy for sports, July 2014.
“The era when sports stars concentrated solely on physical prep is long gone. Today they are just as likely to use psychological techniques to improve their game. As cognitive hypnotherapist Hazel Gale says “people are realising it’s scientific, not woo woo.”