How Mindfulness is Transforming AFL and NBA Athletes


Dear Friends,

I’ve been struck by how far ahead elite sport is in utilising the power of mindful leadership.

One of the most successful coaches in US sport is NBA basketball coach Phil Jackson. He led both the Chicago Bulls (when Michael Jordan played) and the Los Angeles Lakers to national championships.

In an interview with Oprah Winfrey, she asked how did you create such great teams. He  replied by saying:

“I approached it with mindfulness…as much as we pump iron and build physical strength, we need to build our mental strength. We did this for focus, to have one pointed attention – so that we can be in concert with one another. So when things go wrong, you sit on the bench, you take a breath and you reset yourself. You do this through mindfulness…It’s also about being authentic and being who you are, and what you think is important. You have to put spirit back into things.” 

At the Mindful Leadership Global Forum, we are thrilled to have AFL coach Paul Roos and Melbourne Demons’ meditation teacher Tami Roos speaking.

Paul Roos is a legendary AFL coach, captain and player. He transformed the Sydney Swans, led them to a 2005 premiership and was voted the Australian Sports Coach of the Year. The “Roos Factor” is widely acknowledged – with both Paul and his wife Tami offering meditation and emphasising compassion and teamwork as the foundation for their success.

I remember watching the captain of the Sydney Swans, Brett Kirk being interviewed by Judith Lucy on ABC. She asked him “what did you want your legacy with the Sydney Swans to be?” and Brett replied “I want my legacy to be one of love.” This typified the culture that Paul and Tami helped shape at the Swans.

We could all learn a lot from people like Paul and Tami Roos. I for one am really looking forward to hearing them present on “How to create a mindful, compassionate and high performing culture.”

Thanks for being part of this amazing community.