My name is Don. I am excited that you have chosen to review my sport performance coaching experience and qualifications. I am equally honored that you are considering working with me to improve your own sport performance and enjoyment.
I am a sport, exercise, and performance coach. Although evidence-based applied sport psychology is the primary emphasis in the services I provide, I am also competent, experienced, and excited to provide sport-specific skills training, evidence-based physical training, and evidence-based performance coaching services to athletes, coaches, teams, and parents from a wide variety of sports and sport populations. A unique combination of art and science is an important part of my service delivery framework.
Whether we work on the mental, sport-specific, physical, or performance parts of your sport, the opportunity to work closely with an individual player, coach or team to help them succeed and enjoy their sport performance and lives more fully is something I consider to be very special and a privilege.
A few of the sports where I have been successful in helping players, coaches, teams, parents of athletes, and others include baseball, bicycle racing, high school cross country and track, high school diving, diving, motocross, lacrosse, soccer, swimming, tennis, and ski racing.
A few things about me. I live in Arvada, Colorado, I am married, and we have two boys. I first experienced the joy of sport as a very young person, and that joy and passion is still with me today. As an athlete I have trained and competed in a variety of sports throughout my life including baseball, football, basketball, tennis, and ski racing. In addition, I raced motocross for over 10 years. Currently, I compete in racing road bicycles. However, it is with the sport of baseball that I have the most experience, both as a player and coach.
My baseball coaching experience includes competitive youth baseball (Pomona Mudcats, Record: 154-66, three World Series appearances and ten major tournament wins), high school junior varsity and varsity baseball (Colorado 5A State Champions), and college baseball (Regis University NCAA Division II). In all three of these programs I was involved with in- and out-of season strength and conditioning. In addition, I was instrumental in designing and teaching mental skills programs.
In addition to significant baseball coaching experience, I am a former Certified Level 3 USA Cycling Coach (and current competitive road racing cyclist). Not only have I safely and effectively increased the muscular strength, aerobic and anaerobic endurance, and speed of cycling athlete-clients, but I have successfully helped cyclists with the mental aspect of training and racing bicycles.
My education includes a Bachelor of Science in Biology, with minors in kinesiology (exercise science) and psychology. I have a recent master’s degree in sport psychology, where my master’s degree thesis examined the sources and types of sport-confidence in a sample of recreational and competitive youth baseball players. Lastly, I am currently enrolled in a PhD program in General Psychology, with a continued focus on sport and performance psychology.
While I am competent and comfortable working with athletes of both genders, athletes of all ages and abilities, and culturally diverse athletes, my primary area of research interest is with youth and high school age student-athletes. As such, my doctoral thesis will likely address a topic within this important sport population.
Please see my Profile for additional educational achievements.
The opportunity to work closely with you to provide sport performance coaching services falls under four areas: applied sport psychology (mental skills), sport-specific skills training, physical training, and life performance coaching. In our work together, we can focus on any one or all of these areas. It is up to you and what you would like to accomplish.
As an athlete do you have doubts about your sport performance before or during competition? Do you perform better in practice than in games? Do you feel so nervous before or during a game that you don't play as well as you could? Do you lose focus during critical times of the game? As a coach do recognize these things in your players or yourself? Parents, do you notice some of these signs in your son or daughter?
If you answered 'Yes' to one or more of these questions, then the applied sport psychology, mental skills, or psychological readiness training that we can work together on will likely provide some help toward playing or coaching at a higher performance level and with more joy and passion.
Most athletes, coaches, and parents of athletes recognize the importance of the mental game in sport. Surprisingly, many mistakenly consider the state of their mind and behavior to be a random performance factor over which they have little control.
However, as we work together on sport psychology approaches to developing the mental aspects of training and competition, I am confident you can consistently achieve your best performances by being psychologically ready to compete.
Some of the mental aspects we can work together on include mental toughness, self-confidence, motivation, focus, imagery, self-talk, coach- and parent- created motivational climate, coach-player relationship, and parent-athlete relationship.
Aside from the mental aspects, addressing the physical aspects means we can work on helping you get stronger, faster, quicker, and more agile for your specific sport.
For the skills training part, we can work to improve the exact skills that are used in your sport, such as pitching, hitting, or fielding.
Finally, if you want to work together on the life performance area, we can address those other things that are part of your life in and outside of sport.
Importantly, the evidence-based performance coaching we can work together on will help you see future possibilities, expand past your limitations, and become a stronger, more alive individual. After all, my goal is to for us to work together so that you get better and become happier and more successful in what you do in your sport and in what you do with your life. Further, it is my belief that it is just as important to develop the whole person as it is to develop sport performance enhancement and athletic excellence.
Whether you are a player, coach, or parent of an athlete, and regardless of the area or areas you decide are most important, my coaching approach is an athlete, coach, and team-centered approach.
This means I am committed to your positive sport performance growth and development. This person-centered approach also means that I recognize that you are the expert in your sport, and I need to take the time to learn about your sport from your perspective. Too, it means that the working relationship between you and I is the most important thing needed for your success. Finally, trust, rapport, genuineness, and a belief in you as a unique, valuable, and highly functioning person defines my athlete, coach, and team-centered approach. This approach makes it much more fun, personal and rewarding for everyone involved!
Thank you for letting me tell you a little about myself, my experiences, my passions, my approaches, and some of my story. Due to my playing, coaching, and educational experiences, I am able to competently and ethically provide sport performance coaching to a wide variety of individuals- male, female, young, older, beginner, elite, coach, team, culturally diverse- from a wide variety of different sports and performance environments.
I look forward to a collaborative and engaging working relationship, one that will enable you grow, get better, and become happier and more successful in what you do in your sport and in what you do with your life.
Provide sport psychology, physical training, sport-specific training, and personal performance coaching services to athletes, coaches, and parents from a wide variety of sport and sport populations.
The National Strength and Conditioning Association was founded in 1978 with 76 strength coaches from across the country with the common desire to network, collaborate and unify the profession of strength and conditioning. Since its inception, the NSCA has grown to nearly 30,000 members in 72 countries and become the leader in the research and education of strength and conditioning professionals.
Incorporated in 1986, the Association for Applied Sport Psychology (AASP) promotes the development of science and ethical practice in the field of sport psychology. AASP is an international, multidisciplinary, professional organization that offers certification to qualified professionals in the field of sport, exercise, and health psychology.