Andrew Weibrecht on how to perform your best under pressure
Andrew Weibrecht has performed his best at the Olympics.
He claimed the super-G bronze medal at the 2010 Winter Games, despite having never finished on a World Cup podium.
Four years later, still without a World Cup medal, he earned the super-G silver medal at the Sochi Games.
He revealed to NBCOlympics.com how he excels under pressure.
Do not get too excited
Weibrecht is nicknamed “Warhorse” because of his aggressive, hard-charging style.
“That’s my standard energy,” he said. “If I ramp that up, I’m going to spin off the planet. If I keep that in check, I can channel it and use it the right way.”
To remain calm, Weibrecht practices meditation and yoga.
“I’m trying to find that sweet spot where I’m not over-amped,” he said, “but I’m still engaged and excited about the process.”
Weibrecht utilizes the same warm-up routine at an Olympics as he would for any other race.
“The Olympics is the biggest thing,” he said, “but you need to forget that and treat it like it’s a normal day so you can perform at your best.”
Block out distractions
Weibrecht goes into a “bubble” before competitions.
Phone off. Avoid press coverage. No social media.
“The good kind of energy I need to be my best is internal, not the external influences,” he said. “That’s distractive energy.”
Weibrecht does not even like to talk to his coach after course inspection.
“I hate pep talks or anything that says today is different than training,” he said. “That takes me off my game.”
All Weibrecht hears before a race is his music. He prefers hardcore bands such as Rise Against.
“That takes my voice out of it as well,” he said. “It shuts out everything so you get white noise.”
Treat every practice session like a competition
Weibrecht’s best disciplines are downhill and super-G. Both are one-run events, unlike the other three individual disciplines, which have skiers make two runs down the mountains.
“You have to get it right the first time,” he said.
To achieve consistency, Weibrecht has learned to put the same pressure on himself for a training day as he would for a race day.
“Now I get the same type of nerves and anxiety in training as I do when I race,” he said.