Concentration or attention skills refers to an athlete’s focusing on doing, rather than how to do. Attention or focus can be improved by blocking out distractions and using positive self-talk. The more the athlete focuses on the completing the skill with the correct technique, the better their focus is and the better their skill execution will become. This is apposed to focusing on the outcome of the skill or how to perform the skill.
Different types of concentration are needed for different sports. Sports that are high in skill level require intense focusing in order for the skill to be completed well. Sports with lower skill levels then require less intense attention as the skill is more easily completed. Other sports that have a longer duration require sustained focus, and obviously sports that are short do not require attention or focus to be sustained for long periods.
For example sports such as golf or diving require intense focusing, while sports such as Iron Man require sustained attention. There are many sports that require a combination of the two types of focus, these are sports such as soccer or rugby that are played for an extended period of time, but have shorter periods that require intense concentration to complete complex skills.
Attention skills also need to be able to vary throughout a competition. The athlete may need to focus on the execution of a particular attacking skill at one point and then on their defensive position at another. In Rugby League for example, a player may need intense concentration as they perform their role in a set play, catching a bomb under pressure or convert a try, while they will need less intense, but sustained concentration throughout the game as they make tackles and do one out runs.