Listening Topic: Psychology – Conversation about visualization

A. Listen to the conversation between two teammates. Then answer the questions.

1   Why is Jeremy doing so well in track? ___________________

2   What does Cesar help him do? ___________________

B. Listen to the conversation again. As you listen, write T for true and F for false for each statement. Correct the false statements to make them true. Listen again if necessary.

1   Jeremy has improved.

2   Jeremy is doing more exercises.

3   Olympic athletes use visualization coaches.

4   A visualization coach helps a person imagine doing something well before he/she actually does it.

5   Jeremy meets his coach every day.

6   Cesar tells Jeremy to think about what to do if he has a problem while on the track.

7   Jeremy doesn’t need to work out or train anymore.

8   Thinking about what you’re going to do helps you when you actually do it.

9   Jeremy is going to give Rob his coach’s number.



1   He has been training with a visualization coach.

2   Cesar helps him visualize, or see, himself succeeding in races.


1 T   2 T   3 T   4 T   5 F   6 T   7 F   8 T   9 F


A = Rob, B = Jeremy

A:   Jeremy, congratulations. You’ve won again! You’ve run the best times all day. You…I mean you’ve beaten everyone!

B:   Yeah. Thanks, it’s been a pretty good day.

A:   I thought I was ready for this but you blew me away. How’d you improve so much? Are you working out more?

B:   More than I used to. But yeah, I’ve been doing something different, too. I’ve changed my approach to training.

A:   What do you mean?

B:   Well, I got a visualization coach, this guy who helps me with my training.

A:   A what coach?

B:   A visualization coach. He helps me with my work out. He’s like a ‘mind’ coach. He makes me think about and picture what I’m about to do – like run a race – before it happens. I focus on seeing myself. I see myself running faster than I ever have before and leaving everyone else behind and finishing first.

A:   You’re kidding me.

B:   Look, at first I was like, “This is kind of nuts”. But my mom saw this program on TV about how Olympic athletes use these kinds of coaches all the time. And so, she wanted…she did some research and found my coach. There’s a lot of them out there. I was surprised.

A:   So what do you…l mean, how does it work?

B:   Well, Cesar, that’s my coach’s name. He has me imagine myself at the starting line and then seeing myself off the mark first and leaving everyone else behind. That’s not all. I also…well he tries to get me to see myself doing it too, as if I were a fan in the stands.

A:   What? Like you’re in the bleachers?

B:   Yeah, exactly.

A:   And it works?

B:   Well, yeah. I mean, my times have been better than ever before.

A:   It sounds easy.

B:   Yeah, I guess it does. But Cesar has me do other things too. Like, I’ll… he’ll play fan noises like we’re in a real stadium when I’m doing my training with him. It’s for…well because he wants me to get used to noise distractions and visualize myself winning in spite of them. One time, he even sprayed me with water, like it was raining, so I had to see myself winning in the rain.

B:   Yeah, it is strange. But I’m happy the results. That’s for sure. I mean, I want to go to college. And that means I need money. So, I’m hoping all this training will help get me a scholarship.

A:   So, has he taught you anything else?

B:   Yeah, he’s taught me to do a little mental warm up at the starting line too.

A:   Were you doing that today?

B:   I sure was. And personally, I believe it paid off.

A:   Yah, it did.

B:   You know it’s also not just for winning. He has me…sometimes he asks me to think about what to do if I have a problem on the track, like how to handle it. Like what to do if another runner goes down or if I get a bad start. Thinking about it before it happens is supposed to help me get over it.

A:   And I’ve been killing myself with workouts. I should have just meditated!

B:   Yeah, but I gotta you know…you gotta keep working out and training too. You can’t just meditate in a dark room and then go win races.

A:   Yeah, guess not. So, I still don’t get why exactly it works.

B:   Well, it’s related to how your brain works. When I imagine myself doing these things, my brain kind of thinks I…I really am, so it like the message from my brain warms up my muscles and kind of…kind of paves the way for my legs and body to move. It makes it easier to move.

B:   Well, it sure is working for you.

A:   Yeah it surprised me too. When I started, I… I really didn’t know if it would work, and I was, like, you know, “Mom, save your money”, but it’s really…it’s working.

A:   So, can you give me this Cesar’s number?

B:   No way, man. Get your own coach.

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