We've all been in this situation: Its game day, its crunch time, whatever you call it, it is time for you to prove yourself out on the field, on the court, on the race track or in the pool. We're obsessed at being "game-time" ready and helping our athletes get there as well. We've stumbled upon a great post by Matt D'Aquino from Beyond Grappling that we had to share, here it is:
Mistake #1: Cut too much weight.
If you cut too much weight then you are at risk at not performing at your best. At state and national level competitions you may get away with winning while fighting at 70, 80 or even 90% capacity. But at an international meet you have to be functioning at 110% your abilities, anything else and you will lose. Therefore you must ensue you make weight well. For info on cutting weight I always recommend reading Cutting weight for MMA by Eric Wong.
Mistake #2 No game plan
You have to have a game plan. Game plans win fights. Strategy is everything in Judo. You have to know your opponents. Rhadi Ferguson says: "Do your homework!" I have University of Judo members send me footage of their competitors and I help devise a plan to beat people. You need a game plan.
Mistake #3: Not switching your mind into gear
Mindset is everything in all competitive sports, including Judo. In tournaments are you fighting to win or fighting not really aiming for the gold medal?
As a knowledgeable spectator I can see the difference between someone who wants to win and someone who is competing for the photos and the free tournament t-shirt.
Mistake #4: Keep distractions to a minimum
I had a few people email in and mention that one of the biggest mistakes they ever did was invite friends along. If you invite friends to watch you compete make sure they know that when you are preparing to fight that your probably are not in a very talkative mood. If your friends insist on coming sit them near someone who can answer all of their questions.
Mistake #5: Not wanting to win
Don't ever enter a tournament with low expectations of yourself. You always fight to the level of your expectation. So expect the highest result and fight for it. I have seen too many Judoka lose fights simply because they didn't believe they could win. Train your mind to be positive on competition day.