Review: Mental Combat, Phil Pierce

Mental combatI bought this book on Amazon as a suggested read so didn’t realise it was self-published. I’m sure some self-published books are great but this isn’t. It really needed to have gone through the review processes that a publisher would have required. There are scant references, lots of statements which made my eye brows rise with ‘really’ and the book reads like it is written by someone who has an interest in sport psychology and recently realised the benefits of it but has never formally studied it. Unfortunately the author doesn’t tell us anything about himself or his studies or expertise to be able to judge whether they are qualified to write this or not.

It feels a little awkward to read, is very naïve, doesn’t explain concepts particularly well and regularly misses the ‘but how?’ A chapter on visualisation doesn’t once explain how to do visualisation. There are also the helpful(!) points like ‘remember to breathe’ or ‘remember to relax’ which are forgivable in a magazine article, not appropriate in a book promising to give you the secrets to sport psychology.

I’m sure this book has been written with the best of intentions but there are far far better ones out there that will have been written by psychologists who have got vast amounts of experience at translating research into helpful nuggets for athletes and working directly with those athletes on sport psychology techniques. Buy one of those instead.

UPDATE (November 2019): Phil has been in touch to say he recognises some of the limitations in his original book but this year has updated it significantly to improve it and to add some new content so it may read very differently now.

One thought on “Review: Mental Combat, Phil Pierce

  1. Phil says:

    I only just stumbled across your review, but thanks for taking the time to look at my book. It was significantly re-written and expanded in the second edition, launched in 2019 to address a number of issues, including some of those you mention and quite a bit of new content added.

    I worked hard to improve it, but as always I am one guy working alone on this, so I appreciate your comments to help me along the way.
    -Phil

    Like

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