It is encouraging to read Harvey Hillary's comments about decision-making. We have been able to see clearly how critical decision-making is in sailing, with the extreme speed and risks with the new sailing boats in the America's Cup.
Ultimately every action an athlete takes when competing or training is a decision. From our research and working with athletes, we can see rapid improvements in their decision-making, once we have identified their blind spots and biases.
We have also been working with extreme adventurers, to understand better their decision-making, but also help them improve. In many cases, their decisions are life or death decisions. There is no room for error.
“I think decision-making is something that every sport will be talking about [in the coming years],” predicts Harvey Hillary, British Sailing’s Head of High Performance & Innovation. “It is the biggest area of untapped potential in sport. And I think we are treading new ground. I think British sport would look to us as a sort of trailblazer in this area. In the way we are using applied psychology, hooking up with experts in terms of meteorology and strategy, and also experts in brain function, to try and see whether we can enhance the way our sailors manage risk on the water. To optimise their decision-making.”