The Inner Game has been used by Pete Carroll from his time coaching USC up to the present with the Seahawks. Inner Game trainers have also work with professional baseball teams.
I was a professional tennis player when I first read The Inner Game, and I didn’t understand it at the time. A couple years after I retired and started teaching, a friend of mine (not a particularly gifted player, but who was experienced as an Inner Game coach) showed me one self awareness drill, and my head exploded. Every idea I had about tennis and peak performance was turned upside down. I have coached players of all levels, from six-year-olds to guys trying to break through the qualifying of ATP events, and have helped them break through their learning obstacles with Inner Game methods.
The problem for all of us is that our only frame of reference is ourselves. We can’t view ourselves from an objective third party perspective as we perform. Without a perceptive coach, it is impossible to know all the mistakes we are making, and even more impossible to know the secret that might unravel the entire mess that we make.
As a famous war criminal once said “there are known knowns; there are things we know we know. We also know there are known unknowns; that is to say we know there are some things we do not know. But there are also unknown unknowns — the ones we don’t know we don’t know.”
Like so many things in life, we read books to gain some knowledge and insight into what other people may think, but there is a wide chasm been reading a passage of words and actually gaining wisdom.
The Inner Game teaches experiences that are impossible to experience through reading a book, which is why so few people are able to teach its wisdom.