The purpose of this study was to explore the mental strategies used by elite Mount Everest climbers to overcome obstacles while ascending and descending the mountain. Individual interviews were carried out with 10 climbers who have successfully reached the summit of Mount Everest. Common strategies of success were identified, as well as factors that created difficulty on the mountain. The themes of focus, mental toughness, short-term goals, drawing on past experience, connecting to one's body, feeling support from other climbers, and belief in personal capacities were seen to have importance in overcoming adversity on the mountain. These results support mental training as an effective tool for overcoming obstacles in the high stress environment of high altitude climbing.
Burke, Shaunna M. and Orlick, Terry
"Mental Strategies of Elite High Altitude Climbers: Overcoming Adversity on Mount Everest,"
Journal of Human Performance in Extreme Environments:
2, Article 4.
Available at: http://docs.lib.purdue.edu/jhpee/vol7/iss2/4