Clichy: I use meditation to stay focused before games

Gael Clichy has revealed that he uses meditation to help him relax before games.
The Manchester City defender uses a technique called Yoga Nidra – which is a state of consciousness between waking and sleeping – to focus as he prepares for matches.
“The meditation I use is called Yoga Nidra,” he said in an exclusive interview with Footballers Lives.
“You have three stages: one of 10 minutes, one of 25 minutes and one of 40 minutes – so it just depends how much time I have.
“It’s just a way of staying focused, relaxing and makes you feel as if you’ve had some sleep.
“It’s kind of difficult to understand and it’s hard to start with as you have to try and stay awake.
“The whole point of it is to be able to not think about anything. I’ve been doing it for three, four years, so I’m at a level where I know what I’m doing – but at the beginning I was a mess.
“But it takes time, and as you know, the more you practise the better you get.”
The France international claimed that he wasn’t sure if it made him a better footballer, but is certain it has prolonged his career in the Premier League.
“I don’t know if it’s helped me with my game, but it has helped me stay relaxed. I’ve been playing in England for 15 years now.
“But it’s different to when you’re playing your first game. When it’s your first game you feel stressed, your stomach is talking to you, you can’t stop thinking about whether you’re going to do something wrong.
“By wanting to do great and not do anything wrong you tend to not play your normal game. But with experience and the more games you play, you start to control this feeling.
“You can always do better though, and I do believe that meditation can not only help you in sport, but also take control of your life and be a better person.”