A non-profit 501(c)(3) corporation
Advocating For a Written Sport Psychology Curriculum for Youth and School Sports Teams
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To see legislation to develop curriculum to teach self-control using sports as the vehicle, please click on this link.

House Bill No. 4479 was heard before the Massachusetts Joint Committee on Education on February 11, 2008 at 1 PM in Room A-1 of the State House in Boston. The Committee voted to "study" the bill because there were no educational funding for new initiatives.

There is no question that there is a budget crisis in Massachusetts and other states. But consider this: we spend tens of millions of dollars every year on the consequences of a lack of self-control - in violence, drug and alcohol addictions and eating disorders - with no end in sight and no plan in place.

However, if we train kids NOW in the proven techniques of self-control, we will reap the rewards ten years from now.

If you'd like to talk about this with your Massachusetts state senator or representative, here is a link to find them:

Thanks so much for those that supported our bill: Mass PTA, Northeastern University Center for the Study of Sport in Society, the MIAA Sportsmanship Committee, Mass Youth Soccer (200,000 participants), Institute for Sport Coaching, Drug Abuse Recognition For Communities, Dr. Leslie Bourne, Chief of Behavioral Medicine, Fallon Clinic, Dr. Don Smith, Professor, Smith College, Exercise and Sport Studies, MissionSafe, Mass. Youth Committed to Winning, FirstHoops Network, Louis Kruger, Psy.D. Director, School Psychology Program, Northeastern University, Derek Kreager, Professor, Penn State University, Endabuse, Family Violence Prevention Fund, Celene Barnes, Psy.D., MIT Medical - Mental Health Services, Khari Roulhac, former Athletic Director, Cathedral High School, the Urban League of Eastern Massachusetts, the Urban League of Springfield, Boston Youth Sport Initiative, Gary Doherty, AD at Framingham HS and many others.

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts awarded a 10,000.00 gift toward the funding of a Train-the-Trainer program. If your league/city/school is interested in beginning this program, contact

Mitch Lyons has a column called, "Coaching Comments" in the Cape Cod Times since March, 2006. Dedicated to answering questions by kids, parents and coaches about youth and school sports that seem to go beyond the boundaries of sports, Mr. Lyons dispenses practical advice to help make sport a more positive place where valuable lessons are learned.

Log on to Mitch Lyons' current column, (June, 2008) "Coaching Comments" in the Cape Cod Times entitled, "Sportsmanship Lessons Start at Home".

See the March, 2008 guest column by Mitch Lyons, entitled "Self-control and Sportsmanship" for the national periodical Recreation Management at

Rockville High School, in Vernon, Connecticut, is in its second year of implementing the curriculum on a school-wide basis. Last year, Rockville High School received the Sportsmanship Award, for the 24-school Central Connecticut Conference. Congratulations to Athletic Director Steve Phelps, his staff and all the student-athletes at Rockville High School!

The boys basketball team at Rockville High School received this letter from an IAABO official who refereed a game this past week. Imagine if sports was conducted like this:

January 6, 2007

To: Rockville High School Administrators,Teachers, Coaches, Members of the Boys Basketball Team, and Basketball Parents

I had the pleasure of officiating the boys varsity basketball game between Wethersfield High School and Rockville High School on the evening of Friday, January 5, 2007. I have never officiated a game that included such a polite and well mannered players as the members of the Rockville Boys Basketball Team. The players never whined about any close calls, and respected their opponents, their coaches, and the officials. They seemed to be playing for fun, something that I don't often see in the high pressure atmosphere of many high school basketball programs.

There were several instances that come to mind from the game that I would like to share with you:

During the pregame warm-ups, one of the Rockville players gave me a pat on the shoulder. He didn't say anything to me, but the pat seemed to imply, "Welcome to Rockville High School. You're going to see some great basketball, and we're all going to have some fun tonight". No player has ever done that to me before.

During the pregame meeting between the captains, coaches, and officials, it appeared that I had missed shaking hands with one of the Rockville captains. He sought me out, said "Don't forget me", shook my hand, and gave me a chest bump. I'm fifty-three years old, and this was the first chest bump that I've ever received.

On a few occasions, after players dived on the floor, some sweat made the floor slippery. In one case, I asked the Rockville team bench for a towel to wipe up the sweat from the playing surface. As I was about to bend down to wipe up the sweat, a Rockville player said to me, "I'll do it for you", and proceeded, on his hands and knees, to wipe up the area.

After a Rockville player tried to steal the ball from a Wethersfield player, his hand became entangled in the opponents jersey, and he hung on for a second. I had no choice in this case but to call an intentional foul. Most intentional foul calls are made against players in the act of shooting, where the defender pushes the shooter from behind, so some of the Rockville players seemed to politely question my call. One of the Rockville players immediately said to his teammates, "One of you must have grabbed his shirt", which was not only the correct interpretation, but also calmed down his anxious teammates.

There were several instances, where after a close call was made against the Rockville team, one of the players would say to me, loud enough for his teammates to hear, "Good call".

Somebody must be setting great examples for these young men. As a former middle school basketball coach, and a veteran official, I would like to thank the Rockville High School administrators, teachers, coaches, and the players' parents, for teaching these players how to have fun, possibly win some games, but in all cases, show some class on the court.


William H. McKernan, International Association of Approved Basketball Officials, Central Connecticut Board # 6

For the second year in a row, will not need to appear at Rockville High School! Steve Phelps,AD, will be continuing this program on his own by conducting workshops for both students and coaches where he will be teaching how to apply sport psychology techniques at his own school. He knows his work is just beginning with ever-changing students and coaches at his school, but the role of has been truly accomplished. Coach Phelps has been been equipped with a Workshop Manual and a PowerPoint Presentation so he can now give his own workshops on the subject as has always been the plan. New students will be given to read the text and students who had the course since freshman year and are now juniors will re-read to refresh themselves as to the real goals of each day they practice their sport at Rockville.

Dr. Grayson Kimball, Educational Director for, spoke at the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association's Sportsmanship Summit on November 14, 2006.

Rockville High School in Vernon, CT began the GPS program in the Fall of 2005. In just one season the football, volleyball and girls and boys soccer coaches undertook a change in the subject matter of what they were teaching through sports. Here are the partial results of an evaluation form filled out by 101 athletes at Rockville High School at the end of their season:

91% agree that teaching mental skills are an important part of their training.

93% think that all or some of the mental skills apply to everyday life.

77% practice the mental exercises in the curriculum regularly, fairly frequently or some of the time.

88% focus more on mental skills this year than last year.

88% try to recognize when they are negative regularly, fairly frequently, or at least some of the time.

87% try to replace negative thoughts with positive ones.

84% agree that what they are thinking affects their performance.

94% try to evaluate thoughts and change them where they are not helpful regularly, frequently or at least some of the time.

88% set goals for practice regularly, fairly frequently, or at least some of the time.

97% consciously work on being supportive regularly, fairly frequently, or at least some of the time.

One hundred percent of all donations go to the advocacy or implementation of this prorgam. The below PayPal Donation button will allow you to make a donation that will go toward workshops in schools that can not afford to have a trained AAASP certified sport psychology consultant come into their school.
NEW Student Evaluations from Fall, 2005, from Rockville High School in Vernon, Connecticut
The Fall, 2005 mid-season survey (101 girls and boys) as well as past surveys from 2003 and 2004 show quite clearly that student-athletes appreciate that mental skill training is a valuable asset in their sports and in their lives.

GPS is proud to be a member of Commonwealth 5, WCVB TV, Channel 5's charity center for giving. You can make a donation to GPS at Commonwealth 5 at: has presented at:

  • December 15, 2000 - INSTITUTE FOR LIVING, Hartford Hospital, Symposium on Athletics and Mental Health, workshop presenter
  • March 11, 2002 - MAHPERD (Massachusetts Physical, Health Educators, Recreation and Dance Association) Convention in Worcester, workshop presenter.
  • March 16, 2002 - Newton-Wellesley Hospital's symposium on Newton and Needham Youth Soccer, speaker
  • March 25, 2002 - Newton Brown Middle School Community Day Program, workshop presenter.
  • July 3, 2002 - Hoop Mt. Basketball Camp
  • July 10,2002 - Wakefield High School Basketball Camp
  • August 14, 2002 - Curry College Basketball Camp
  • August 30, 2002 - Woodbury School, New Hampshire, Wellness Fair, workshop presenter
  • March 10, 2003 - MAHPERD convention in Worcester, MA, speaker
  • March 12, 2003 - Tri-Valley Conference (10 high schools) Spring Coaching Conference, main speaker, Millis High School, Millis, MA
  • March 13-15, 2003 - Notre Dame University, Mendelson Center, poster presentater at their bienniel conference on youth and school sport, South Bend, Indiana.
  • July 23-25, 2003 - MSSAA (Massachusetts Secondary School Administators Association)meeting, speaker.
  • August 5,6, 2003 - Fairborn High School, Fairborn, Ohio
  • August 21, 2003 - Kenwood High School, Baltimore County, Maryland
  • August 29, 2003 - Woodbury School, New Hampshire, Wellness Fair, workshop presenter.
  • March 13, 2004 - MAHPERD convention in Worcester, MA, Speaker
  • March 14-15, 2004, Mendelson Center for Sport, Character and Culture, Biennial Conference, poster presenter
  • March 18, 2004 - MSSADA (Athletic Director's convention), Hyannis, MA, exhibitor
  • May 12, 2004 - Watertown High School PTSO presentation, Watertown, MA
  • May 27, 2004 - Chelmsford Leadership Day, UMASS-Boston, Presenter
  • July 28, 29, 30, 2004 - Massachusetts Secondary School Administrators Association, Presenter
  • September,3, 2004 - Woodbury School, Salem, New Hampshire, Speaker
  • September 13, 2004 - Sharon High School, Boosters Club presentation, Speaker
  • November 16, 2004 - Lunenburg High School Coaches Workshop, Speaker
  • December 8, 2004 - Lunenburg High School, Mandatory Parents Meeting, Speaker
  • January 3, 2005 - Milbury Federal Credit Union, Milbury MA, Soccer Training Systems, Sports Lecture Series
  • March 9, 2005, Rockville High School, Vernon, CT, Coaches, Administrators, and concerned parents, speaker
  • March 18, 2005, Cape Cod Neighborhood Support Coalition in support of the Barnstable Council County for Children, Youth and Families, organization for the Second Annual Children, Youth and Families Summit, closing speaker
  • March 23-24, 2005, Massachusetts Secondary School Athletic Directors Association meeting, Cape Cod, vendor
  • June 28 - July 2, 2005, National Federation of State Association meeting, San Antonio, TX, workshop presenter
  • July 26 - July 29, 2005, Massachusetts Secondary School Administrators Association meeting, workshop presenter
  • August 23, 2005, Wilton High School, Professional Development Day, Wilton, CT
  • August 29, 2005, Madison High School, Coaches Workshop, Madison, CT
  • August 30, 2005, Vernon High School, Team workshops, Vernon, CT
  • September 2, 2005, Woodbury School, Salem, NH, workshop presenter.
  • October 20, 2005, Connecticut Department of Corrections, Cheshire, CT, Workshop presenter to Recreation Supervisors.
  • February 2, 2006, Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Associattion Sportsmanship Committee, Franklin, MA.
  • February 4, 2006, Bermuda's Department of Youth, Sport and Recreation 20th Annual Sports Conference, Hamilton, Bermuda, conference presenter.
  • March 23, 2006, Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference annual convention.
  • June 19, 2006, Springfield College Annual Conference, Let's Play, Life Enhancement Skills through Sport, workshop presenter.
  • November 2, 2006, West Hartford Public Schools, West Hartford, CT, Hall and Conard Coaches Professional Development Program, presenter.
  • November 14, 2006, Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association, Sportsmanship Summit at Gillette Stadium, Foxboro, MA, presenter.
  • December 11, 2006, Holliston High School, Holliston, MA, coaches, parents, student-athletes meeting, presenter
  • March 23-25, 2007, National Afterschool Association Conference, Phoenix, AZ, presenter.
  • July 15, 2008, Yale University, Zigler Center for Child Development and Social Policy, School of the 21st Century Conference, New Haven, CT

Here are a series of links to some of the articles written by Mitch Lyons:, December 6, 2006, "Unsportsmanlike Behavior and Our Nation's Youth."

Athletic Management, August/September, 2005, "Making It Positive!"

Coaching Management Volleyball Postseason Edition, 2004, "Ready, Set, Focus."

Athletic Management, August/September, 2004, "Hitting the Goal"

Athletic Management June/July, 2004, "The Mind Matters", a non-profit 501(c)(3) corporation formed on July 2, 2002, has generated news because of the unique concept it espouses. A national curriculum for sports so coaches know what to teach and kids know what to learn.

  • December 6, 2006,, "Unsportsmanlike Behavior and our Nation's Youth."
  • November,2006, OnBoard, National Association of School Officials (NASO) monthly newsletter, "Changing the System", accepted for publication.
  • June 1, 2006, Hartford Courant, GetPsyched Essay Contest."
  • WNTN, 1550, Diana Cutaia Show, Newton, MA
  • September 15, 2005, Harford Courant, "Creating a New Mind-Set for High School Athletes."
  • August/September, 2005, Athletic Management, "Making it Positive."
  • August 17, 2005 The Hartford Courant,"Controlled Environment, Signing up for sportsmanship classes."
  • June 5, 2005, The Boston Globe, "Lawmaker eyes sports courses to ease violence."
  • June/July, 2005 issue, Athletic Management, "How much do high school athletes learn through participation in sports?"
  • March 30, 2005, Boston Herald, "Bill pitches sporstmanship for public school athletes."
  • March 18, 2005, Cape Cod Times, "He puts positive spin on sports."
  • March 18, 2005, Cape Cod Register, "It takes mental toughness to stop sports violence."
  • March 2, 2005, Daily News Tribune, "Creating good sports."
  • March, 2005, Athletic Management, "An A for effort."
  • March, 2005, Coaching Management, Basketball Edition
  • Winter, 2004, Coaching Management Volleyball Postseason Edition and Track and Field Edition
  • September 27, 2004, NCAA NewsGuest Editorial, "Athletics value based on academic gain."
  • September 20, 2004, Worcester Telegram, "Hazing incident opportunity to reassess high school sports."
  • August/September, 2004, Athletic Management, "Hitting the goal."
  • June/July, 2004, Athletic Management, "The mind matters."
  • Winter/Spring Edition, 2004, Et. Al., Santa Clara University School of Law, "GetPsyched: Mitch Lyons '73 created a curriculum to teach mental skills to high school athletes."
  • Febraury 2, 2004, NCAA News,, "Winning and education can be partners."
  • October, 2003, Recreation Management, "Changing Youth and School Sports."
  • September 4, 2003, Boston Globe West Edition, Thursday, September 4, 2003, Boston Globe, West Edition, "Program helps keep Newton athletes psyched."
  • January 5, 2003, Boston Sunday Globe, Education seciton, "Teaching Tools."
  • December, 2002, Managing School Athletics, Featured Story
  • November, 2002, Athletic Management, "Progressive Programs"
  • November, 2002, Athletic Management, New Course gives mental edge."
  • November, 2002, Psyched internet journal, "Youth and School Sports: There is a choice."
  • September, 22, 2002,Boston Globe, "Athletes Prepare Metnally."
  • September 25, 2002, Newton Tab "School Notes: Newton High Schools enroll more coaches."
  • January 25, 2002, WTAG, 580 AM, George Brown Show
  • January 7, 2002, Boston's WCVB Channel 5, "Coach Changing Focus Of Student Sports."
  • December 26, 2001, Reading Daily Times Chronicle "Sports Psychology is Part of Curriculum."
  • October 24, 2001, Newton TAB, "Pumping Up the "I" - Newton Tries Out Sports Psychology Lessons."
  • October 25, 2001, Boston Globe West Edition, "Athletes Tackle Sports Psychology - Goal is to get more out of the game."
Our Mission
To bring positive change to the general school curriculum and sports programming by:
 •  Building a positive school environment
 •  Enhancing emotional health
 •  Reducing violence, addictions and eating disorders including obesity

"After attending the workshop, the team set up realistic goals for each game. While our record was 1 and 14, we are able to maintain a positive atmosphere because we reached our goals."

 -- Bill Verner, Natick High School, Girls Hockey

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