Alberto Castellani is at the peak of his game. The much beloved “Mental Maestro” from Perugia, Italy has spent a lifetime helping top ATP players improve their mental skills. Now Castellani is focused on training coaches. From Shanghai to Zagreb, Mexico to Macedonia, Castellani’s mental training methods are in high demand as coaches seek for ways to improve the final frontier of tennis training- the mind. In 2017, Castellani founded the ISMCA (International Sport Mental Coaching Association). This year, Castellani packaged a revolutionary mental training system for high performance athletes called EGOGRAMS.
What was the objective for creating the ISMCA?
ALBERTO CASTELLANI: The objective of ISMCA is to unite and bring together from all over the world coaches that are interested in mental training. The association is a way to transfer knowledge and also, to share with each other in a platform that benefits all. ISMCA offers techniques and training methods for those coaches who want to specialize in mental skills for performance tennis, both on the court and off-court training.
What do coaches want most out of the courses you teach?
AC: Most participants are interested in on-court mental training like concentration, positive reinforcement, self-confidence, how to improve the technical stroke through visualization. I want to give them some tools that they can use immediately.
How did you start EGOGRAMS?
AC: I started EGOGRAMS because on the ATP, WTA and grand slams there are an infinite amount of statistics on the physical side. From serve percentage, errors, ball speed, distance a player has run, etcetera. However, there is nothing about mental statistics or mental performance. But if you ask the high level players, they admit that the mental is the most important aspect of performance. I call it the Tennis Paradox – all coaches and players say mental is the most important, but nobody practices it!
In simple terms, how can EGOGRAMS help coaches and players instantly?
AC: EGOGRAMS is an app based function with 3 stages of EGO that we all have inside of us. With observation, numbers, percentages and critical evaluation we can compile data, gauge the mental state through the performance stages of the match. The goal is great because with EGOGRAMS we can have numerical and statistical evaluation of the mind and emotions during the match. This helps the coach, because oftentimes, the player and coach disagree on the player’s mental performance during practice and matches which can create a division between coach and player. Now, coach and player can look at the data and discuss rationally.