Meet Dr. Grayson Kimball: Author, Instructor and Sport Psychology Coach
Dr. Grayson Kimball is a man of many titles. He is an author, a long distance runner, a sport psychology consultant certified with the Association for Applied Sport Psychology, and an Associate Professor in the College of Psychology and Behavioral Sciences at Argosy University, Online Programs.
As an instructor and sport psychology coach, his greatest reward is witnessing the “ah-ha!” moments. It’s seeing an athlete apply what they’ve learned to their everyday routines or notice the first improvements in their mindset and performance. It’s when students who struggle at first “through their own hard work then achieve a level of academic success that surprises them.” Sometimes, it’s even introducing undergraduate students to sports psychology, only to have them decide to pursue an advanced degree and career in the field.
As a sport psychology consultant in the Boston area, Dr. Kimball owns and manages GTK Sports. In the past 10 years, he has built up his reputation and expertise working with athletes of all ages and ability – ranging from novice youth to professional and Olympic level athletes. In his practice, he teaches clients how to develop the mental toughness they need to maximize their performance and realize their full potential, focusing on areas such as:
• Imagery & Visualization
• Relaxation & Stress Management
• Self-talk & Positive Thinking
Although he mentors athletes from a full line-up of sports, Dr. Kimball’s greatest passion is running. In addition to personally completing six marathons, he’s coached several marathon teams and is currently working with one of the 2014 Boston Marathon Charity Teams. Over the years, he’s noticed that despite how critical mental focus is to persistence, psychological conditioning is often overlooked in the world of marathon training.
A long-time Grateful Dead fan, Dr. Kimball believes that music can help runners to stay in the moment. “Throughout all my training, the Dead would get me from start to finish. As I would listen to the lyrics, I began realizing how some of them were specific to running and mental discipline,” he explains. “The song ‘Fire on the Mountain’ begins with the line ‘long distance runner what you standing there for?’ - If ever a lyric spoke to a runner, this was it.”
Inspired by his love for music and the value he could provide to runners who wished to complete those grueling 26.2 miles, Dr. Kimball wrote Grateful Running: Mental Training for the Long Distance Runner, publishing the book in 2011. Each chapter relates a specific lyric to a mental skill that can be incorporated into marathon training.
He says, “The strategies are designed to help the reader develop an internal motivation, maintain a realistic positive attitude, handle adversity, and create a mindset to help them achieve peak performance on marathon day.” In addition, he encourages the reader to consider how these strategies could apply beyond running to be used in their personal lives.