Intuition is sometimes called your instinct, sixth sense, or gut reaction. It is your automatic way of responding to a situation without analyzing it or consciously thinking about it. With intuition it seems like you just know how to respond, even to a situation that you have never encountered before.
People with good intuition are able to process information quickly by recognizing patterns that they have seen before. A good way to develop this pattern recognition in sport is through experience and repetition. The more deliberate effort you put into your sport, the better your intuition will be. Increased repetition of skills and mindful pattern recognition helps you learn to make decisions quicker. Your responses become automatic.
Here are some ideas to improve your intuition:
• Start to pay attention to your initial response to situations. What does your gut tell you? How often do you follow your gut? What kind of results do you get?
• Silence your inner critic. If you tend to ignore your intuition, it may be due to self-doubt or over analyzing. Try to listen to your intuition without judgment and follow it without hesitation. Trust yourself and be willing to take risks.
• Increase your focus to help with pattern recognition. Make sure you attend to the information around you. Having information will help you make the best decisions possible.
• Repetition, repetition, repetition. The more time spent in your sport engaging in deliberate practice (either at practice or on your own), the better your intuition will be.