Meditation

Mind Games: How Meditation Made Ryan Tannehill a Better Quarterback – Sports Illustrated

Summary

NASHVILLE – The Tennessee Titans’ starting quarterback and a father of two young children, Ryan Tannehill has to find time for himself whenever – and wherever – he can.

That explains why teammates strolling past his Tesla in the early morning hours sometimes witness a surprising sight: It’s Tannehill, eyes closed as he relaxes in the driver’s seat, looking for all the world as if he’s trying to catch a few last-minute winks before the workday begins.

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NASHVILLE – The Tennessee Titans’ starting quarterback and a father of two young children, Ryan Tannehill has to find time for himself whenever – and wherever – he can.

That explains why teammates strolling past his Tesla in the early morning hours sometimes witness a surprising sight: It’s Tannehill, eyes closed as he relaxes in the driver’s seat, looking for all the world as if he’s trying to catch a few last-minute winks before the workday begins.

Often times it’s back-up quarterback Logan Woodside who has to explain to his teammates exactly what is going on, and why they need not worry about their two-year team captain.

“There have been guys who come (into the practice facility) and say, `Hey, Ryan’s out there sleeping in his car,’” Woodside said. “I tell them, `No, no, it’s OK. He’s not sleeping. He’s just meditating.’”

Anyone familiar with Tennessee over the past few years has seen Tannehill display an impressive poise and presence in the pocket, one that shows up with great frequency in the most critical of times. In fact, since he became the starter in 2019, Tannehill has guided the Titans on 12 game-winning drives in the fourth quarter or overtime – most in the NFL during that stretch, and two more than the next-closest player, Las Vegas’ Derek Carr.

One reason Tannehill believes he’s able to keep his focus so well in those types of situations, filtering out distractions and noise?

It’s meditation, a practice he began about five years ago and – as the evidence indicates – has found increasingly beneficial.

“A lot of what’s going on with meditation is acknowledging a thought or a feeling, and then moving past it,” Tannehill said. “Obviously within a football game, there are a lot of things that are going on – a lot of thoughts, a lot of actions, a lot of plays.

“Whether they’re good or bad, you have to be able to put them aside and get ready for the next play. That’s something I tried to do even before I was meditating, just be able to move on – whether it was good or bad – and get ready for the next play, the next drive. But I definitely feel like that skill has gotten stronger since I began meditating.”

Locked in before games

Tannehill’s interest in meditation was sparked in the latter stages of his tenure in Miami, when a friend – knowing Tannehill was a big reader – gave him a book titled “10% Happier: How I Tamed the Voice in My Head, Reduced Stress Without Losing My Edge, and Found Self-Help That Actually Works — A True Story.” It was written by former ABC news anchor Dan Harris, who, after suffering through a nationally televised panic attack, sought to figuratively re-wire his brain through meditation.

That was also about the same time one …….

Source: https://www.si.com/nfl/titans/center-stage-plus/tennessee-titans-nfl-ryan-tannehill-meditation