The Jamaica Paralympic Association (JPA) is leaning on a sport psychologist to provide "good vibes" and create a united approach to overcome COVID-19 challenges during this year's rescheduled Tokyo 2020 Paralympics.
Dr James Scott Hamilton, a clinical and sport psychologist, forms part of the JPA's management team for the Games which are set to take place against the backdrop of the coronavirus pandemic.
The JPA said Dr Hamilton's innovative rap sessions had become well-known among Jamaica's Para-athletes and emphasised the value of sport psychology to cope with the disruption of training regimes, the postponement or cancellation of events and isolation caused by COVID-19.
Dr Hamilton said a training centre must provide a "good vibes home environment" that inspires a "togetherness" among athletes and promotes "collective purpose in their pursuit of excellence while instilling in the individual a driven spirit for success and transformation".
He also insisted it was important athletes concentrate on "solidarity rather than individualism" to defeat the pandemic and develop innovative approaches to adapt to situations, with a focus on mental strength development and emotional intelligence training.
"As a sport psychologist I feel privileged to play my part in helping athletes and teams cope with the COVID-19 pandemic and the challenges resulting from the postponement of the Olympic and Paralympic Games," said Dr Hamilton.
"The importance of cooperation among sport psychologists in sharing knowledge, experiences and coping methodologies so as to find common solutions for athletes in dealing with the challenges of the pandemic and other events in their lives."
Dr Hamilton said the notions of "teamwork", "we are all in this together" and "we can help each other" must transcend from individualism.
"Even though as professionals we seemingly compete against each other with our respective teams and athletes every four years at the Olympic and Paralympic Games, we know we are all collectively working to make a positive impact on athletes and teams worldwide," he said.
"Additionally, we are making each other better professionals, irrespective of whose team wins in the end."
JPA President Christopher Samuda said sport psychologists were "critical" in helping athletes understand the "psyche of self-excellence" and the "psychology of optimal performance".
Samuda added that the JPA's policy mandates that a sports psychologist must be a member of its management team for the Games.