Professional Performance Coach
My passion for performance coaching started before I realized what mental skills training was. As a student athlete, I physically trained as hard as anyone. However, I neglected the mental side of performance. As I look back at my performances in school, sport and life during that time period, the missing link was that I did not take the time to understand my whole self. This understanding started to take shape when I observed and supported my brother, Tyler, through his own health journey.
Ty went from an individual who protested running a quarter mile to an individual who completed a full marathon and lost 100 pounds within a two-year timeframe. Despite the weight loss, Ty’s biggest change was his mental performance. He went from a fixed mindset to a growth mindset. In addition to supporting my brother, I have embarked on several endeavors to physically push myself (e.g., completing several half-marathons and a full-marathon, hiking up Half Dome and biking 120 miles in one day). All of these experiences prompted my understanding of the importance mindset has on our performance.
My passion is to spread awareness of the power of our mind and the great potential that awaits those who decide to train their mind to complement their physical training. We all have mental barriers (e.g., self-doubt, comparison thinking, etc.) that make our life more challenging. This is where I come in. I learn about clients’ situations in an empathetic and nonjudgmental way, introduce mental skill concepts and provide tools that support and guide clients along their fitness journey.
My name is Craig Frea, and I earned my M.A. in Sport, Exercise and Performance Psychology from Minnesota State University, Mankato (MNSU). My time at MNSU included an internship with the Mankato YMCA and MNSU Counseling Center where I worked with individuals from many different backgrounds. I gained an appreciation of how mental skills may be used by everyone to navigate life’s challenges. Currently, I am working toward my certification as a mental performance coach (CMPC) with the Association for Applied Sport Psychology (AASP).
Through my training, I developed a person-centered approach predicated on building the foundation of a client-practitioner relationship through effective listening, and understanding the client’s goals and motivators. I truly believe the client is the expert of themselves. Thus, I use motivational interviewing strategies to establish awareness for both parties, and then provide feedback when appropriate. My theoretical foundation is based on the Mindfulness-Acceptance-Commitment (MAC) approach that prompts performers to build self-awareness, let go of their past mistakes and fully embrace the present moment to achieve optimal performance.
I use a systematic and science-based approach to ensure performers are empowered to maximize their strengths and align with their personal values.
The free consultation will be used to establish a foundation for the client-practitioner relationship.
Subsequent sessions will follow a format of recapping the previous week, discussing the client’s goal for the current session and how that goal will be achieved, the introduction of a mental tool that will provide a different perspective toward specific elements of mental performance, and lastly, we will debrief the session by going through any questions or comments that are present.