How Coach Pete Carroll is Changing NFL Culture

Mindful's editor-in-chief on how NFL coach Pete Carroll is inspiring his players to be not only better athletes but also better people.

Sports. If you’re not into a sport yourself—either as a player or fan or both—you know people who are, including your children. Most boys and girls grow up playing one sport or another. For some, athletic prowess and achievement become all-encompassing passions. Athletics also becomes a place where values are formed and where players learn how it’s possible to go beyond the limits they had imagined for themselves—and that’s exhilarating and life-altering.

Playing sports requires moment-to-moment attention combined with loose, flexible awareness. It’s a place where what’s going on in our head has to synch with what’s happening on the ground. Therefore, it’s a place where lots of mind training takes place.

Professional athletes, without a doubt, are the most significant role models for many young men. Unfortunately, too many players fail to be truly meaningful role models for deep values that can carry you through life whether you succeed in sports or not.

Pete Carroll—head coach of the Seattle Seahawks, the defending NFL Super Bowl Champions and on a trajectory to return there—employs a coaching style and philosophy that emphasizes mind training and asks players to go deep inside to find out who they are and…