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Performance Psychology Consultant Leslie Sherlin To Help OUAZ Athletes Manage Stress
– Leslie Sherlin, Ph.D., studies the brains of people making decisions — very, good decisions. He’s one of the world’s leading experts on the neuroscience of high performance and has helped professional athletes such as Rickie Fowler (PGA), Kyle Korver (NBA), and Carlos Quentin (MLB) in managing their stress. He recently signed on to be a professor at the new Ottawa University Arizona residential campus in Surprise. While Sherlin has been involved with Ottawa University for more than 18 months, this past fall he took the skills he teaches to professional athletes and shared them with Spirit student-athletes.
"The opportunity to share knowledge and facilitate growth is exciting and I’m honored to be part of OUAZ,” said Sherlin. “Both in the classroom and on the field, I look forward to fostering the student’s development of the whole self. When an individual begins to understand the mental attributes of sport and performance they create lifelong skills that help them succeed in life, not just the competition in front of them. I hope that teaching these skills and passing along the firsthand knowledge that other elite and professional athletes have shared inspire the students to achieve the best version of themselves.”
Sherlin has collaborated with Kerri Walsh Jennings (volleyball), Mike Bryan (tennis) and Kaya Turski (skier) to name a few. When with athletes, Sherlin helps with brain training by doing various assessments and exercises with each athlete. He utilizes a device with the athletes and they are able to travel with it for when it is needed.
Sherlin takes a psychophysiological approach with multiple facets of technology. He breaks it down into three primary psychological categories; they are the brain, heart rate and respiration. The technology he uses provides immediate feedback reflecting the athlete’s engagement levels in constructs such as focus or stress. At OUAZ, Sherlin works with Spirit athletes on regulating their physiology and incorporating mental skills.
Sherlin was drawn to Ottawa University because of the amazing people he gets to meet and work with. He started as an adjunct professor at Ottawa and from day one with the University people have gone above and beyond to help him achieve whatever he needed help with. No one ever shot his ideas down and always supported him. The main draw for Sherlin to join OUAZ was the chance to combine his two passions in life; teaching and working with athletes.
“Working with him (Sherlin) has helped me a ton,” said OUAZ men’s tennis player Eric De Romas. “Through these sessions I now have someone to speak to about both tennis and school life.”
De Romas continued, “I got involved in this because he teaches a class that I am in and mentioned that he does 1-on-1’s with student-athletes if they are interested. I saw it as an opportunity to raise my game to the next level and I jumped at the chance.”
Sherlin has founded a number of different companies in Mesa, Ariz., and Paso Robles, Calif. and as well as holding academic appointments at Ottawa University, Grand Canyon University and Northern Arizona University. Most notable among them, he is the Co-founder, Chief Executive and Science Officer of Neuro Therapeutics, Inc., in Mesa, a leader in the research and use of neuroscience for improving human performance. Here at OUAZ, Sherlin is an Assistant Professor of Psychology.
In his previous stops, Sherlin worked with more than 1,000 professional athletes, teams and individuals, including action sports. Sherlin has led research partnerships with Red Bull’s High Performance Center, USA Track & Field, US Military Special Operations Forces and more, to discover what the brains of the most high-performing people were doing and help them do more of it.
"As a professional athlete, I have learned that it takes more than just physical talent to perform at your best,” said former Texas Rangers pitcher Tyson Ross. “The ability to train the mental side is something that can take your game to the next level. We always try and do more reps in the gym, but often neglect the training of our brain.”
At OUAZ, Sherlin has worked with the softball, track & field and women’s volleyball teams. Individuals from other sports including tennis, soccer and football, along with coaches have also reached out to Sherlin.
Sherlin’s work has been featured in the Wall Street Journal
, Sports Illustrated
, Bleacher Report
, Popular Science, Outdoor Magazine
and more. He is also a sought-after public speaker, with hundreds of hours on stage around the world. He continues to keep his hands in the trenches providing sport and performance consulting and brain training services to individuals and teams.
Sherlin is listed in the United States Olympic Committee Sport Psychology and Mental Training Registry. He is a certified consultant by The Association for Applied Sport Psychology, is board certified from the International Board of Quantitative Electro-physiology and is also certified by the Equinine Assisted Growth & Learning. In addition, he is board certified both in biofeedback and neurofeedback.
“It is a blessing to have Dr. (Leslie) Sherlin as a faculty member at OUAZ,” said Director of Athletics Kevin Steele. “Dr. Sherlin’s credentials read like the who’s who in sport psychology and innovation with cognitive technics for advanced athletics success. It is a distinct advantage for our student-athletes to have access to such an outstanding leader in this field as Dr. Sherlin. His involvement with our student-athletes in the classroom and in their respective sports truly sets OUAZ Athletics apart from the rest.”
Sherlin will be tasked with teaching Psychology and Sociology of Sport, Theories of Personality and Statistics for Social Sciences. Sherlin normally teaches between two and four courses per term at both the Surprise and Phoenix Ottawa campuses.
About Ottawa University
Founded in 1865, Ottawa University prepares professional and liberal arts graduates for lifetimes of personal significance, vocational fulfillment and service to God and humanity within a Christ-inspired community of grace and open inquiry. Ottawa University is a comprehensive, not-for-profit educational institution serving 3,000 students through its residential campuses in Ottawa, Kan., and Surprise, Ariz., and adult campuses in Overland Park, Kan.; Phoenix, Queen Creek and Surprise, Ariz.; Brookfield, Wis.; Jeffersonville, Ind.; as well as online. For more information, visit www.ottawa.edu.
For more information about OUAZ athletics, visit http://www.ottawa.edu/ouaz/athletics. Follow OUAZ athletics on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/OUAZSpiritAthletics/ and on Twitter twitter.com/OUAZSpirit.