3.06 – The Psychology of… Stage & Screen

The stars are out as Dr Pete Olusoga explores the psychology of stage and screen with the wonderful British actor (and Coronation Street veteran), Shobna Gulati. Joining them is Psychologist and Lecturer at Lancaster University, Dr David Tod, for a fascinating conversation about the psychology of acting.

What are the mental processes involved in preparing for and taking on an acting role? How can performers manage the intense scrutiny that goes with their jobs? Find out, in this brilliant episode of EightyPercentMental. 

3.05 – EPM Special: Live from AASP in Fort Worth, Texas

Eighty Percent Mental host, Dr Pete Olusoga, attended the Association of Applied Sport Psychology (AASP) Annual Conference in Fort Worth, Texas. As well as winning an award for Distinguished Public Communication, Outreach, and Awareness for producing this very podcast, Dr Pete spent time talking with conference attendees, including the one and only Professor Bob Weinberg (of Weinberg & Gould fame!), about the latest research, techniques, and approaches in the world of sport and performance psychology. Also featuring in this episode: Duncan Simpson, Director of Personal Development at IMG Academy, Dr Amber Shipherd from Texas A&M University Kingsville, Dr Adam Naylor, Leader of Performance Psychology at Deloitte, and a bunch of other amazing people! 

3.04 – The Psychology of… Speed 

Continuing the mission to explore the psychological aspects of performance, Eighty Percent Mental host Dr Pete Olusogaexplores ‘The psychology of… Speed’ with two-time World Superbikes Champion, James Toseland. Also featuring Sport Psychologist, Shameema Yousuf, this episode explores the motivation, the risk, the psychological skills involved in going really, really fast! 

3.03 – The Psychology of… Dance 

In this episode of EightyPercentMental, Dr Pete Olusoga gets to grips with ‘The Psychology of… Dance’ with Kit Holder, First Soloist with Birmingham Royal Ballet and Dr Sanna Nordin-Bates, Associate professor in sport psychology, at the Swedish School of Sport & Health Sciences in Stockholm. What are the mental challenges involved in such a creative art form? Find out in this inspiring episode of EightyPercentMental. 

Kit Holder has been a professional ballet dancer for over 20 years, touring throughout the UK and internationally. He has also choreographed professionally and holds a Master’s Degree in Choreography. In additional to his work in dance he is now in the final year of an undergraduate degree in Psychology. 

Dr Sanna Nordin-Bates is a Chartered psychologist with the British Psychological Society, teaches performance psychology to athletes and coaches, dancers and teachers, and is a world-leading authority on the psychology of dance 

3.02 – The Psychology of… The Coach

This episode is pure gold. With the help of two special guests, Coach Marc Steutel and Dr Kristen Dieffenbach, Dr Pete Olusoga investigates ‘The Psychology of… The Coach’. How do coaches incorporate sport and performance psychology into their coaching? How can coaches be vulnerable and authentic in their practice? How can psychologists and coaches work most effectively together? All of this and more is discussed in what turned out to be an incredible conversation.  

Coach Marc Steutel is the Lead Assistant Coach for the Great Britain Senior Men’s National Team and Head Coach of the Newcastle Eagles, one of the most successful franchises in the history of British Basketball. Dr Kristen Dieffenbachknows more about the psychology of coaching than just about anyone on the planet. She is the president of the United States Center for Coaching Excellence (USCCE) and serves on the research committee for the International Council on Coaching Excellence (ICCE). Dieffenbach’s areas of teaching, research and consultancy expertise include coaching education, professional issues in coaching, ethics in coaching, and performance enhancement 

3.01 – The Psychology of… Endurance

Welcome back to Series 3 of Eighty Percent Mental. In this series (or season if you’re American), Dr Pete Olusoga is going to explore some different areas of performance – and not necessarily just sport performance. In this first episode, Dr Pete talks to endurance athlete, Greg Hewitt, and Sport Psychologist, Dr Amy Whitehead, about The Psychology of Endurance. Why do people put themselves through the pain of ultra-marathons, adventure races, and ironman triathlons? What are the psychological skills, strategies, and attributes that help get athletes through a race that lasts a full week or more? Find out in this episode of The Eighty Percent Mental Podcast.

2.15 – Super Special Bonus Winter Olympic Review!

In this Super Special Winter Olympic Review, Dr Pete Olusoga is joined by Dr Chelsi Day, Sport Psychologist at ‘The’ Ohio State University, and Dr Leah Washington, resident Olympic Superfan and professor of sports medicine and sport psychology to talk about the ups, downs, ins, outs, and triple Salchows of the Beijing 2022 Winer Olympics. From drug scandals to ‘minor’ broken necks, and managing the post-Olympic comedown, this episode has a little bit of everything. Make sure you stay tuned to the end to find out how Leah is going to save the Olympics!  

Oh, and dog sledding was a demonstration event in the 1932 Winter Olympics in Lake Placid. So now you know. 

2.14 – Mental health and wellbeing in sport

A ‘win at all costs’ culture can make it almost impossible for people in high-performance environments like sport to show any sort of vulnerability, to concede that pressure takes a toll, to admit that they are not in fact superhuman. But many sports performers are beginning to change this narrative. In the penultimate episode of Series 2, Dr Pete Olusoga is joined by expert guests, Shakiba Moghadam and Dr Paul Gorczynski, for an open and honest conversation around mental health and well-being in sport  

Shakiba Moghadam is a doctoral student focusing on the mental health literacy of women rugby players. She has a BSc in Psychology and an MSc in Sport & Exercise Psychology and is the co-owner of Move Training Centre, a private Training facility in Southampton.  

Dr Paul Gorczynski is a Senior Lecturer at the University of Portsmouth and an HCPC registered Practitioner Psychologist. Paul was an expert member of the IOC consensus statement on mental health in elite athletes and is the co-author of the BASES Mental Health in Sport and Exercise psychology units. 

2.13 – The greatest sports movie of all time?

At the start of Series 2, we ran a poll to find the Greatest Sports Movie of All Time… The Movie GOAT. Somehow, Remember the Titans won… still not sure how that happened, but pretty sure it’s your fault. Anyway, in this episode, Dr Pete is joined by Dr Meghan Halbrook, Dr Tammy Sheehy, and (not the first) returning guest, Todd Cauthorn, to discuss what we can learn from some of the great sports movies out there… and maybe more importantly, which is the Movie GOAT!

Dr Meghan Halbrook is a Certified Mental Performance Consultant, an Assistant Professor in Sport and Exercise Studies ,and the Director of the MA in Coaching and Sport Leadership Program at Randolph College.

Dr Tammy Sheehy, originally from New Zealand is an Assistant Professor at Bridgewater College where she directs the coaching minor and teaches classes in coaching and sport psychology.

Todd Cauthorn, from Roanoke Virginia, played basketball at the College of William and Mary in Virginia, and then had stops playing pro basketball in Austria and Belgium on his way to playing for the Sheffield Sharks for 12 seasons.

2.12 – Do we deserve better from our sporting heroes?

From diving to doping to serious crimes, hardly a day goes by without an athlete getting themselves into some sort of trouble. In this episode Dr Pete is joined by Sport, Clinical and Forensic Psychologist, Dr Mitch Abrams, and Assistant Professor of sport and exercise psychology at Georgia Southern University, Dr Megan Byrd, to ask: do we deserve better from our sporting heroes? We talk about whether or not sport is inherently “good”, whether athletes should be role models, organisational deviance, and a whole lot more in this fascinating episode of Eighty Percent Mental 

Mitch is an expert in anger, violence and trauma, specifically as it presents in the sports world. Besides writing Anger Management in Sport in 2010, he also is the Chief Psychologist in the prison system in New Jersey, where he has worked for the past 21 years. Megan is a certified mental performance consultant and the co-director of mental performance for South Georgia Tormenta FC.   

Trigger Warning: This episode contains non-detailed references to sexual assault and rape. If you are in any way affected by the content of this episode, you can contact the Rape Crisis Centre at for information and support. 

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